18-21 Support


What’s Changing?

On the 1st September 2018 we will be introducing a new discount card for young people aged 18-21. With it they will be able to buy the 7 & 28 Day versions of all our products with a discount of 15%.

This new card will replace our legacy discounted products – the SYConnect 18/20/25 and SYConnect+ 18/20/25 – which will be withdrawn from sale on the 30th September 2018.

The Reasons For the Change

TravelMaster is making this change to provide a simple to offer discount against all our products for young people instead of our currently unpopular and unsustainable approach of providing countywide tickets.

This change  should make much easier for customers to access the best discounted product for them and will make it much easier for us to enhance how we sell our tickets.


We appreciate that our current discount structure covers up to the day before a customer’s 26th Birthday. Unfortunately in the current market we are unable to maintain that in a sustainable way.

In determining the age range for the new discount we looked at a number of options, including looking at the offers in other areas, and opted to align the new discount structure with the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

Under the current NMW structure a Young Person will move from an hourly wage of £5.60 to £7.05 when they turn 21. We used this as a benchmark to align our discount pricing to rates of pay, appreciating that some of our full price paying customers will also be on that same NMW, with an added year of eligibility.

We are aware that the discount offered in other regions looks to be greater than that offered under our new scheme – with some areas offering a third or over 40% off.

However, the already low cost of our full-price products (many are priced less than the national average for single operator products) means that we had limited space within which to offer a discount. We will also be one of the only regions to provide a discount across all products not not just the more expensive all-zone versions.

As a result our 15% discount remains viable commercially and still results in pricing that is similar to discount schemes in other areas – the equivalent all zone West Yorkshire product for a 20-year-old would cost £88.60; which is only a further saving of £2.70 compared to our new pricing and yet represents a 44% discount against their adult range.

To make the transition between the old discounted products and their replacements easier we have built in a transitional period where products will overlap.

As a result all our old products will remain available to buy from Ticket Vending Machines until the 30th September.

We also know that some customers do stack their product and buy in advance and to make sure those customers do not lose money all our old products on smart cards will be valid for use until the 29th November 2018.


Due to technical limitations existing personalised cards cannot be used to access the new 15% discount and the new branded card will be needed.

Any existing products loaded to the card will remain valid until Thursday 29th November 2018:

  • Last possible date of purchase – Sunday 30th September
  • Latest possible start date – Friday 2nd November
  • Latest possible expiry date – Thursday 29th November

Please note: Products of the same type cannot be overlapped. Therefore, if a product on the card runs over the 2nd November, then the start date of that overlapping product is the latest possible start date for that customer’s Smartcard.

The new 18-21 Discount Card should be available to apply for in the days leading up to the 1st September.

The card will be applied through MyTSY and applications processed on our behalf by the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive.

If you have difficulty with your application please contact Traveline on 01709 515151

The 18-21 Discount Card is designed to be available to all Young People aged up to the day before their 22nd Birthday regardless of where they live or their level of study.

Over the past three years TravelMaster has deployed a range of Student tickets and these unfortunately failed to sell in volumes that were sustainable; this was despite extensive promotional activity, significant cost to the Company and the opening of points of sale at Colleges & Universities.

The new Discount Card is instead designed to be a simple blanket approach providing discounts for all Young People; those in study, those in work and those in apprentices up until their 22nd Birthday.

We will be maintaining existing points of sale at Colleges & Universities to enable eligible Students to buy products at the 18-21 discounted rate from their place of study.

The new 18-21 Discount Card is being implemented by TravelMaster.

TravelMaster is the trading name of SCR Ticketing Company Limited. It is an independent and entirely commercial business owned by the region’s public transport operators and is not a part of the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive or other public body.

If you want to feedback about these changes then please Contact Us

It is correct that unfortunately some customers may have to pay more for products and in some cases this may be a significant increase.

This only applies to the small number of customers who are purchasing the existing products for their full validity (E.G All buses, trams and trains anywhere in the county).

For other customers who purchase our more popular district tickets (Such as CityWide), who until now have had no discount, this change means they can purchase those same tickets for less.

We are advising customers to make sure they are purchasing the right ticket and haven’t been purchasing the county-wide products in the past purely as those were the only discounted tickets.

Unfortunately some customers will still be negatively affected due to the artificially low price of the existing age range which was no longer sustainable for us to offer in the current marketplace.

Did you know?

The average equivalent cost for 28 days to insure a car in this region for this age range is £209.46 for men and £158.38 for women – and that’s before running costs like fuel and maintenance!

Did you know?

A railway season ticket between Doncaster and Sheffield costs £96.80 so the new pricing offers a saving of £5.50 before considering the unlimited travel on bus & tram offered by the less expensive discounted SYConnect+.

Did you know?

If a young person aged 18-21 buys a discounted 28-Day CityWide with the new discount card they’ll pay just under £2 a day for unlimited travel by bus and tram in Sheffield.