Face coverings on public transport

2 months ago Mon 21st Sep 2020

Face coverings must be worn

In line with guidance from the government, you must wear a face covering on public transport.

This can be a mask, scarf, snood, bandana or even something you can make out of an old t-shirt. View this handy guide on how to wear and make a face covering.

Face Covering Awareness Week

We've partnered with Arriva, Stagecoach, Stanley Travel, other regional operators and local authorities, to high the importance of wearing a face covering as part of our Face Covering Awareness Week which kicks off on Monday 28 September.

If you fit into any of the government exemptions, then you'll be able to travel on our buses without wearing a face covering. Just tell the driver when you board the bus and show an exemption card (you can download them further down the page).

Exemptions include:

  • Children under 11-years-old and young people travelling on dedicated school transport services.
  • People with breathing difficulties and other respiratory conditions.
  • People with mental, physical or sensory difficulties, including those who may not understand or remember that they need to wear one.
  • People that would find it difficult to put on or take off a face covering safely, accurately, consistently or without pain.
  • People who rely on lip reading and accompanying carers who will need to communicate with them.

We expect everyone to wear a face covering if they can. Our drivers are already working behind a screen to protect them so they do not need to wear one. 

Face coverings FAQs

When are face coverings required on public transport from?
Face coverings are compulsory on all forms of public transport, unless you fit into any of the government exemptions mentioned above.

What is a face covering and where do I get one?
A face covering can be mask, scarf, snood or bandana that covers your mouth and nose and is tied behind your head. You can even make your own – view this handy guide on how to make and wear a face covering.

Where do I need to wear a face covering?
Face coverings should be worn for the duration of your journey, and in bus stations and interchanges.

Do bus drivers need to wear a face covering?
No. As our drivers are already working behind a screen to protect them, they are not required to wear face coverings, but they can do so if they wish. If you're not wearing a face covering our drivers may ask you to download one of our cards that you can find further down the page.

Who will be policing the wearing of face masks and will you issue fines?
No, as per government guidance, our drivers will be giving advice to passengers but enforcement of the rule will come from the British Transport Police and local police forces. They will have powers to fine those not wearing face coverings on public transport, although this would be a last resort. The fixed penalty notice will require you to pay £100 (reduced to £50 if paid within 14 days).

How do I let you know that I’m exempt from wearing a face mask?
We would ask that you work with us and comply with the requirement to wear a face covering if you can. If you are unable to then you should inform the driver, briefly explaining as you board.

To make things easier, you can use the award-winning Helping Hand scheme, which is fulfilled by our sister company Brighton & Hove Buses. The quickest way to start using this is to download a PDF and print your own at home, or save/screenshot it on your phone and show the driver when you board. If you can't do either then please consider asking a friend to download and print it for you.

We've also joined the Sunflower Lanyard Scheme to help those with hidden disabilities - find out more.

There are additionally cards available from Nexus that can be downloaded here.
 Helping Hand - face coverings 

 Nexus face covering - health   

 Nexus face covering - disability