ScotRail ends free travel for school children after Christmas

ScotRail has cancelled another 40 train services today. Picture: John Devlin
ScotRail has cancelled another 40 train services today. Picture: John Devlin
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Free travel for schoolchildren is set to be ended by ScotRail after Christmas.

The operator’s Kids Go Free scheme has allowed an adult to take up to two children between the ages of five and 15 on return journeys for free.

But the initiative will be scrapped from 2 January, with a £1-a-child charge to instead be levied.

READ MORE: Trains cancelled across Scotland due to ScotRail staff shortages

The new charge will apply to all adults travelling with kids on returns journeys, or as season ticket and flexipass holders.

The rebranded scheme has been called Kids for a Quid.

Scottish Labour’s transport spokesman Colin Smyth described ScotRail as “Scrooge” given the timing of the decision.

“With Christmas less than a few weeks away, it’s sad to see bosses at ScotRail acting like Scrooge by taking free rail travel away from children across Scotland,” he told STV.

“The Kids Go Free scheme is a fantastic initiative, which encourages families to use public transport and not be out of pocket for doing so.

“This rip-off fare rise will see passengers handing out even more money to a private company which is failing them time and time again.”

Children under five will still travel for free on all ScotRail services.

READ MORE: Edinburgh train forced to terminate in Kirkcaldy due to “disturbance”

A ScotRail spokesman said: “We are committed to providing our customers with the opportunity to travel across our services and the Kids for a Quid offer is available on a wider range of adult tickets.

“This provides families with the opportunity to travel throughout the country, and take advantage of free entry to the many attractions that we have been able to secure.”