HM Veterans’ Railcard

We will introduce a Veterans’ Railcard allowing Armed Forces veterans one-third off the cost of train travel.

We believe that service in the Armed Forces should be recognised and continue to be rewarded long after you have left.

Building upon our previous commitments to support veterans, we are establishing a new HM Veterans’ railcard to ensure our veterans are able to access discounted travel – recognising their service to this country.

Overseen by the Office for Veterans Affairs, this universal benefit for everyone who has served will save many veterans hundreds of pounds a year. Only the Conservatives are committed to supporting our Armed Forces.  

Background

The vast majority of the country’s 2.3 million veterans already qualify for existing elderly or disabled people’s railcards.

However, up to 700,000 do not.

The existing HM Forces Railcard covers regular forces, volunteer reservists, war widows or widowers and the spouses and dependent children of each of these groups.

It costs £21 a year and gives a third off all tickets. There is a minimum fare of £12 before 10am on weekdays.  

Our solution

We will extend the eligibility of this railcard to all those who have served in the Armed Forces.

Overseen by the cross-government Office for Veterans Affairs, eligibility would be determined by the new Veterans’ ID Card being rolled out from this year. Spouses and dependent children will be able to travel at a discount with the railcard holder. It will save users substantial sums e.g. nearly £38 on an off-peak return from Leeds to London. 

Conservative record

We are supporting our veterans by setting up the first ever Office for Veterans’ Affairs.

This is the first time that veterans’ affairs are being overseen by dedicated ministers in the Cabinet Office to ensure the whole of government pulls together to deliver the life-long support our veterans deserve – this Railcard is a demonstration of this cross-government working delivering for veterans.

We have launched the first ever UK wide Veterans Strategy.

The Strategy outlines a new vision and principles to support those who served, in areas including community and relationships, employment and skills, health and wellbeing, finance and debt, housing, and contact with the law.

Awarding new ID cards to all veterans to mark their time in the armed forces.

A new ID card for armed forces veterans makes it easier for them to verify their service and access specialist help and support.

Recognising the Armed Forces Covenant in law.

We legislated to give the Armed Forces Covenant a statutory foundation, introducing a requirement for the Secretary of State for Defence to report annually to Parliament on progress in delivering Covenant commitments.

Investing £10 million annually in the Covenant Fund.

This supports Armed Forces communities under four broad funding themes: removing barriers to family life; extra support after service for those that need help; measures to integrate military and civilian communities; non-core healthcare services for veterans.

Signing up to the Covenant as a Party.

In signing the Armed ForcesCovenant we have committed – among other things – to striving to support the employment of Service spouses and partners; seeking to support employees who choose to be members of the Reserve forces, including by accommodating their training and deployment; and pro-actively marketing all vacancies to the veteran community. We will also offer serving and retired military personnel a discounted rate for Party Conference.