Up to 80 Coffs Harbour seniors will be the first to try out the NSW Government’s $250 Regional Seniors Travel Card from Thursday, 23 January ahead of applications opening statewide later this month.
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 committed to improving connectivity in the bush, which is why we announced the $250 Regional Seniors Travel Card,” Mr Barilaro said.
“We are delivering on this commitment to help our seniors travel to and from essential services and make it easier and more affordable for them to remain connected with friends and family.”
Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said the Coffs Harbor pilot would inform the statewide rollout of the card, with applications set to open from Wednesday, 29 January.
“We are running a three week pilot in Coffs Harbour to ensure every step of the process is a smooth and hassle-free experience for both seniors and retailers in the bush,” Mr Toole said.
“This pilot will allow us to test the card and work through any issues that may arise. Following a successful trial we anticipate the Regional Seniors Travel Card will start to reach eligible seniors from mid-late February.”
Eligible seniors will have a minimum of 12 months to use their card from the time of activation. Member for Coffs Harbour Gurmesh Singh said the pilot was great news for locals.
“I’m excited that a group of Coffs Harbour seniors will have the first opportunity to test the card. After they have applied through Service NSW, they will receive their card and can use it to purchase fuel, use taxi services or to book a NSW TrainLink fare,” Mr Singh said.
To be eligible to receive the $250 Regional Seniors Travel Card you must be an age pensioner with a valid Pensioner Concession Card or hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card issued by either the Department of Human Services or Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Seniors must also live in regional NSW outside Sydney, Newcastle or Wollongong City Council boundaries.