A pilot trial of NSW's new $250 Regional Senior Travel Card scheme began today with up to 80 Coffs Harbour residents able to apply for the card ahead of applications opening statewide later this month.
The card will allow seniors in regional and remote areas to buy fuel, use taxi services or book a NSW Trainlink fare.
Eligible seniors must be an age pensioner with a valid Pensioner Concession Card or hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card and must live in regional NSW outside of Sydney, Newcastle or Wollongong City Council boundaries.
The regional seniors travel card is pre-loaded with $250 to pay for travel-related expenses at retailers, online and over the phone. It is a prepaid, non-reloadable Visa card with a 4-digit PIN and a magnetic strip on the back. It can be used Australia-wide, including in metropolitan areas and when travelling interstate.
The card is valid for 14 months from the issue date. Applications will open statewide on January 29 and it is anticipated cards will be distributed from mid-February 2020.
The regional seniors travel card program is available for a two year trial period (2020-2021).
Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the new card would ease the burden of travel costs for eligible seniors living in rural and regional parts of NSW.
"We are delivering on this commitment to help seniors travel to and from essential services and make it easier and more affordable for them to remain connected with friends and family," he said.
Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole said, "This pilot will allow us to test the card and work through any issues that may arise."
For more information: 13-77-88, service.nsw.gov.au or visit a Service NSW Service Centre.