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BENEFITS FOR DISABLED, CARERS & COMPANIONS

 

We update Disability Benefits on a Daily basis via our FACEBOOK PAGE HERE


AIRPORTS & FLIGHTS

If you think you need special assistance, you can declare your disability to the airline.

Crucially, you need to contact your airline in advance to tell it about your requirements. This should be done as early as possible, and no later than 48 hours before you travel.

The aviation regulator the Civil Aviation Authority says help is available from the moment you arrive at an airport and can cover:

  • Your journey through your departure airport.
  • Boarding the aircraft and during the flight.
  • Disembarking the aircraft.
  • Transferring between flights.
  • Travelling through your destination airport.


British Rail

Get 1/3 off rail travel for yourself and any person accompanying you with a Disabled Person's Railcard 

Further information on rail travel

National Express

Reduced price fares are available for disabled travellers, and there is a helpline to plan your journey.

National Express Assisted Travel Team can be contacted as follows:

Via the customer service centre Tel: 0371 781 81 81  lines are open 7 days a week, 8am - 10pm.

Via email: addl@nationalexpress.com

By post:

The Assisted Travel Team
National Express
National Express House
Mill Lane
Digbeth
Birmingham
B5 6DD

You can apply here for a National Express Disabled Coachcard and save 1/3 of the price of a ticket.

Further information for disabled travellers is available HERE


Get a free 'offer me a seat' badge for public transport

If you're unable to stand for long periods, travelling on public transport can be tricky, particularly during rush hour. Not everyone feels comfortable asking other passengers to give up their seat, so some train and bus companies offer free badges to disabled passengers, which say 'please offer me a seat'. This can be particularly useful if you have a disability which isn't visible.

The transport providers below all offer free 'priority seat' badges or cards – Scope also has a helpful page of tips on how to ask for a seat when you need it.




Free admission for carers at football matches

Some clubs offer this to fans with disabilities and their carers.

Check with your local club to see if this is something they offer

Discounted theatre tickets and free tickets for carers

Lots of theatres offer discounted tickets for disabled people. Some also reserve seats for wheelchair users and allow carers in for free.

Check with the theatre when you’re booking tickets to find out what they offer.


Music & Performance Venues

Music & Performance venues run by local councils offer discounts for disabled customers, free carers tickets and accessible seating for many of their events.  Check your local venues for details.

Free cinema tickets for friends and carers

You can apply for a card from the Cinema Exhibitors’ Association (CEA) that gives one free ticket for anyone accompanying you to the cinema.



Free admission at National Trust and English Heritage properties for Carers

Both the National Trust and English Heritage give free entry to companions or carers of disabled visitors. The disabled visitor pays the normal admission fee or membership. To save having to ask for free entry at a National Trust property, you can apply for an ‘Access for All Admit One Card’ in advance.

Click this link to find out how to apply for a  National Trust Essential Companion Card 

Click this link to read an article about the English Heritage Carers Go Free Policy

Concessions at Public Libraries

Some libraries offer the following services at a reduced rate or free of charge to disabled people:

  • Overdue books
  • Computer access
  • Audio and visual material.

This varies from one local authority to another.

IF IN DOUBT...... ASK

All sorts of places – from the amusement park to the zoo and everywhere in between – offer concessions, but don’t always advertise them.

It’s worth asking – you’ve got nothing to lose.


Some Tips from the MONEY ADVICE SERVICE

Motability, Blue Badge Scheme and discounted travel

Whether you prefer to travel by car or use public transport, as a disabled person you might qualify for a range of schemes designed to help with leasing a vehicle, parking, or offering free or discounted travel on trains, buses and coaches.

Motability Scheme

The Motability Scheme enables disabled people to lease a new car, mobility scooter or powered wheelchair.

You might be eligible to join the Motability Scheme if you get certain disability benefits.

Find out more about the Motability Scheme on Motability website.

Blue Badge Scheme

The Blue Badge Scheme provides a range of parking benefits for disabled people who have difficulty walking.

For example, you can park for free in pay-and-display bays and also on double and single yellow lines.

Apply for a Blue Badge on the GOV.UK website if you live in England or Wales, or apply if you’re in Scotland or Northern Ireland.

Car tax exemption

If you’re getting certain disability benefits you are exempt from paying Vehicle Excise Duty (car tax, or road tax).

If you’re on the Motability Scheme you don’t need to do anything.

If you own your car you have to apply for the exemption.

Buses

Free bus passes

Depending on where in the UK you live, you might be entitled to free or discounted bus travel.

Find out more about bus passes and other travel concessions where you live by following the links below:

Trains

Disabled Persons Railcard

The Disabled Persons Railcard gives you a third off most rail fares.

The discount is for two people – so you can save money for a friend or a carer too.

You have to buy the railcard but it can pay for itself after just one journey.

There’s lots of assistance available when travelling by train – including help getting on and off the train and help with luggage – all free of charge.

Find out more on the Disabled Persons Railcard website.

Coaches

There is no national concessions scheme for coach travel.

However, discounted travel is available depending on which coach company you’re using.

National Express

National Express sells a Disabled Coach Card that gives a third off their standard fares.

Find out more on the National Express website.

You can get free travel if you use your National Entitlement Card on City Link coaches.

Goldline (Northern Ireland)

You can get half-price travel if you use your SmartPass on Goldline coaches.

Find out more about applying for a SmartPass on the nidirect website.

Community transport

Community transport (which is sometimes called ‘Dial a ride’ or ‘Ring and ride’) are usually run by local authorities and can be a good alternative to taxis or public transport.

Travelling in London

Disabled Persons Freedom Pass

A Disabled Persons Freedom Pass will give you:

  • Free 24-hour travel across Transport for London’s networks (except for some riverboats which are half price)
  • Free train travel on the London Overground network (however, you might not be able to travel before 9.30 am)

London Taxicard Scheme

The London Taxicard Scheme gives subsidised taxis for disabled people who find using public transport difficult.

Find out more about applying for a Taxicard on the London Councils website 
 

 


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