Paid school transport

Apply for a concessionary 'spare' seat sometimes available on school transport.

1 Overview

In parts of West Sussex we provide coaches, buses, minibuses and taxis for pupils who are eligible to help with transport between home and school.

Sometimes there are spare seats on these vehicles which we offer to pupils who do not qualify for assistance. These are called 'concessionary seats'.

Please note that:

  • we make a charge for these seats
  • concessionary seats are not available on public transport.

2 Seat availability

We can only offer a concessionary seat if it is not required for an eligible pupil. We always try to inform parents by the beginning of the new school year if a seat is available. If we can't offer a seat you will need to make alternative arrangements until we can offer one.

If there are more applications than available seats, we will use the following order of priority:

  • children attending the nearest appropriate, designated or catchment school - those living furthest away having highest priority
  • children attending an alternative school - those living closest to the school attended having the highest priority.

If a large number of pupils qualify for transport, it may not be possible for us to allocate concessionary seats until after the term has started. It is also possible that we may have to withdraw the concession at a later date if:

  • the place is needed for a pupil who is eligible to transport
  • the route is no longer needed
  • a smaller vehicle is used.

Seats sometimes have to be withdrawn during the term at very short notice. In these cases, it is the parent’s responsibility to make alternative transport arrangements.

We will not withdraw a concessionary seat from a student attending the sixth form of the nearest appropriate school/sixth form college once the place is offered if there is no alternative public transport available.

3 Costs

If you choose to pay in two instalments, they will be due in October 2023 and January 2024.

If you opt to pay in seven instalments, they will be collected monthly from October 2023 to April 2024.

Lower rates

Lower rates are for those living within walking distance of their school (under three miles for children of eight years and over; two miles for younger children).

If you wish to pay by Direct Debit or cheque in two instalments:

  • Primary school - two payments of £175
  • Secondary school - two payments of £259

If you wish to pay by Direct Debit only in seven instalments:

  • Primary school - seven payments of £50
  • Secondary school - seven payments of £74

Higher rates

Higher rates are for those living further away and students in year 12 or above, who are not entitled to assistance with transport.

If you wish to pay by Direct Debit or cheque in two instalments:

  • Primary school - two payments of £189
  • Secondary school - two payments of £273
  • Year 12+ - two payments of £385

If you wish to pay by Direct Debit only in seven instalments:

  • Primary school - seven payments of £54
  • Secondary school - seven payments of £78
  • Year 12+ - seven payments of £110

We will let you know the rate you will be paying.

Any delay in payment may result in authorisation to travel being withdrawn. If travel is required for one way only, the cost is half the normal termly ticket charge. If a pupil starts travelling after the beginning of the term, the charge will be proportionate to the number of days of travel.

4 Apply

The application form for travel from the start of the Autumn term (September) will be available here by the end of June 2024.

If you wish to apply for the remainder of this academic year only (until the end of the Summer term), please email

5 Refunds

If a seat is withdrawn by the County Council, a full refund of any unused portion per term will automatically be given to the parent once the ticket has been returned to the Transport Coordination Group.

The refund will be calculated on a pro rata basis.

6 Conditions of the scheme

  • Parents undertake not to allow children to travel until authorised by the Transport Coordination Group.
  • Children will be deemed to be authorised to travel only when a ticket has been issued.
  • Parents will undertake to settle invoices promptly. Any delay in payment may result in authorisation to travel being withdrawn.
  • If a parent decides to relinquish a concessionary seat, a refund will be given from the date that notification is received by the Transport Coordination Group and only if the unused portion of the ticket is more than 10 consecutive school days. No refund will be given for the summer term.
  • Parents and children will be responsible for ensuring that behaviour on the vehicle is acceptable and complies with any code of conduct issued by the school and the County Council. Unacceptable behaviour may result in the withdrawal of the concessionary seat.
  • In the event of the concessionary seat being withdrawn for use by an entitled pupil, a refund will be given for the unused portion.
  • In the event of transport failing to operate, refunds to charges or reimbursements will not normally be made, this includes passengers travelling by use of the concessionary seat scheme.
  • All documents relating to this application will be processed in line with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation and may be shared within West Sussex County Council, your child’s school, Euclid Ltd who produce bus passes on our behalf and with your child’s transport provider, solely for the purposes of arranging and providing home to school transport.

    The data will be kept until your child reaches the end of statutory school age or two years after the transport is no longer in place (whichever is later) and then securely destroyed.

    This Authority is under a duty to protect the public funds it administers and, to this end, may use the information you have provided on this form for the detection and prevention of fraud. It may also share this information with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds for these purposes.​

Please view our Privacy Policy page for more information.

7 Contact our team

Last updated:
12 June 2024
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  • West Sussex County Council will only use this email address to respond to any issues raised.