1 What the County Council offers
We can provide a one-year disabled person's railcard which can save you:
- a third off standard and first-class off-peak rail fares across Britain
- the cost of buying a railcard yourself.
Or the County Council offers:
- bus passes for older people, providing free bus travel for West Sussex residents of State Pension age
- senior railcards, providing a third off rail travel for West Sussex residents of State Pension age
- bus passes for people with a disability, providing free bus travel.
- If you already have a bus pass and would prefer to have a railcard, you will need to return your bus pass to us.
- If we provide a railcard and you decide to swap it for a bus pass, you will need to wait until your railcard has expired. This is because we pay the rail company upfront so we will not receive a rebate.
2 Eligibility and proof of disability
The rail company has its own set of eligibility criteria for a disabled person's railcard.
For example, you may qualify if you:
- receive disability-related benefits, including a Personal Independence Payment
- have a hearing or visual impairment
- have epilepsy.
More eligibility criteria and information about what you need to provide as evidence can be found on the Disabled Persons Railcard website.
Before we issue a railcard we also check to make sure you live in West Sussex. This is particularly important as neighbouring local authorities do not offer the same benefit to their own residents.
3 Apply for a disabled persons' railcard
Step 1. Download, print and complete the application form:Disabled railcard (and bus pass) application form (PDF, 168KB)
Step 2. Attach copies of the supporting evidence.
Step 3: Post everything to:
West Sussex Bus Pass (Disabled Person's Railcard)
PO Box 212
We will aim to get your railcard to you within three weeks of receipt.
4 Renewing or updating your disabled person's railcard
You will need to renew your railcard annually.
We only issue railcards for one year so if you opt for a railcard you must reapply every year. This is because we are bound by the terms and conditions of the Rail Delivery Group (RCG, formerly ATOC). These state that current evidence of your entitlement must be provided when you renew your railcard.
The rail company will write to you before your railcard expires asking if you wish to renew. If you would like to do so, return the completed form to us and we will send it, with payment, to the train company.
5 Replacing a lost, damaged or stolen railcard
The County Council cannot replace lost, damaged or stolen railcards - this is handled by the rail company.
You can find out about the process on the Disabled Persons Railcard website.
6 Contact details
If you need help or advice contact the Bus Pass Information helpline, who can also advise about railcards.
7 Buying a railcard yourself
If you do not want to relinquish your free County Council bus pass to get a disabled person's railcard you can buy one yourself. They cost around £20 for a year.
You can obtain one through National Rail's Disabled Persons Railcard website, either by applying online or in writing.
Some district and borough councils offer their residents additional help with these though, so it is worth checking with your local council first.