Vale of Clwyd MP Dr James Davies is joining Britain’s train companies in promoting the use of a half price rail discount card to get more jobseekers back on track and into work, as new research shows that journeys made using the card dropped by 3,300 in Wales since the start of the pandemic, meaning that thousands of jobseekers could be missing out on major savings.
The Jobcentre Plus Travel Discount Card gives holders a 50% discount on journeys across Britain and anyone claiming Jobseekers Allowance or Universal Credit for 3-9 months (18-24 year olds) or 3-12 months (over 25s) can apply through their Work Coach and local Jobcentre Plus.
The drop reflects a national trend which has seen usage of the card drop by over a third in the months March 2020-October 2021 – with over 62% of journeys taken using the card in London and the South East. With new unemployment figures out this week which show joblessness at 58,000 in Wales, James is working with the Rail Delivery Group and Jobcentre Plus teams to further promote the card across the rest of the country. Last year, jobseekers saved a total of £1.5m using the discount available to them.
“In the wake of the pandemic there will be jobseekers in the Vale of Clwyd who are looking for new opportunities and I am therefore keen to make them aware of the Jobcentre Plus Travel Discount Card, which could give those eligible access to significant discounts on travel as they seek work.
“As well as providing a cleaner, greener alternative to cars, the railway is unlocking new possibilities for those who want to re-enter employment, with this discount card making it easier for people to attend interviews and find new jobs. I encourage all those eligible to apply for the card, which will provide them with an impressive 50% discount off rail travel.”
Jacqueline Starr, Chief Executive of Rail Delivery Group, said:
“Over 700,000 journeys were made during the pandemic by people using the Jobcentre Plus Travel Discount Card, including 5,600 in Wales, but with the world of work opening back up and new opportunities becoming available, we want to encourage even more people to take advantage as they look to secure new jobs. The railway is a key part of Britain’s clean and fair recovery, and this discount card is yet another way that train companies are helping the country to bounce back.”