THOUSANDS of young people are to get cheaper bus travel across York through a fares shake-up.

The YOzone card, which already provides discounted fares for 11 to 16-year-olds, will be extended in September with a separate card for those aged 16 to 18, introduced by City of York Council and bus firms following requests from parents, schools and young passengers.

First, one of the operators offering the new card, is also cutting prices on child day, week and month tickets for YOzone cardholders and launching new £3 daily and £10 weekly tickets for students, through schemes praised by Transport Minister Norman Baker and York Central MP Hugh Bayley.

Council officers are to visit schools and colleges to register 11 to 18 year-olds for new YOzone cards.

Meanwhile a report on bus-ticketing will next week go before Coun Dave Merrett, cabinet member for transport, following York Youth Council’s petition asking for young people to be able to “ride around for a pound”.

Coun Merrett said: “The new YOzone card is something young people have aked for for years and it’s great to have helped make it happen – our aim is to increase bus usage in York by 18 per cent in 2015/16 and, through working with travel operators to provide discount opportunities for even more people, we hope to achieve this.”

Ethan Redmond, York’s UK Youth Parliament member, said: “Because of new laws meaning young people have to stay on in education or training, the 16 to 18-year-old YOzone card can help alleviate some of the financial stress families can face.”

First is freezing single and return ticket prices for under-16s with YOzone cards while reducing daily, weekly and monthly tickets.

Mr Baker said: “I have been encouraging bus operators to look at the fare deals they can offer to young people, so I am pleased First has taken this forward.”

First’s commercial director, Simon Pearson, said: “These new fares make bus travel even more attractive when compared to the cost of driving and is fabulous news for young people in York, who we want to become long-term bus users.”

More information about the YOzone card is at, with application forms at York Station’s visitor information point and at First’s price details are at