COVID-19 | Health Workers

Free Travel on public transport for all health and social care trust workers

The Department for Infrastructure and Translink are providing free use of their public transport networks for health and social care staff during the Covid-19 immediate response period.

This applies to everyone who works in health and social care in Northern Ireland – all jobs, all sectors, and including private sector/agency workers and student nurses during their placement, until further notice.

Many staff will have photographic NHS/HSC staff passes. These should be shown to Translink staff at ticket desks, when boarding or when requested for inspection.

For eligible staff who do not have photographic NHS/HSC staff passes, including agency workers and others operating in private sector such as care homes or pharmacy, staff must obtain a letter from their employer.  These should be on company letterhead or stamped with the employers’ company stamp. 

Staff should then show the letter together with valid photo ID* to Translink staff at ticket desks, when boarding or when requested for inspection. Details of the requirement are issued by DoH and DfI.

Nursing and health & social care students can avail of the free travel scheme for the purposes of placement only. These students must present an authorised (signed) letter from their university that confirms their placement at a health & social care setting including placement dates, plus valid photo ID*.  Students attending their place of study (e.g. Queen’s University or Ulster University) are not eligible.   

*Examples of suitable photographic ID include:

  • UK, Irish or EEA driving license
  • UK or Irish Passport
  • International passport (e.g. international nurses)
  • Student ID card (nursing and health & social care students)
  • Any other official photographic ID

This initiative has been announced by Nichola Mallon, Minister for Infrastructure, in recognition of the work of all health and social care trust workers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Translink will be flexible in the application of this policy but reserves the right to deny free boarding if staff are not satisfied that an individual is a health and social care worker.

Translink welcomes the opportunity to play our part and to support our key health workers who are doing an incredible job during these most difficult times.  

We are committed to providing essential public transport services for key workers and those needing access to key services such as healthcare and food supplies. 

This is a dynamic situation we are all in together with many Translink staff also working extremely hard to ensure we continue to deliver vital bus and train services for our community.

We all must do it to get through it

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