Skip to main content

Travel pass scheme

What it is

The travel pass scheme was introduced under the Finance Act, 1999. As a civil service employee, you can receive an annual travel pass for bus, train, Luas, or ferry services. This is not a benefit in kind.

The travel pass scheme operates for a 12-month period, and you can apply for it at two intervals only in any given year. NSSO accepts applications for either January to December or July to June.

As announced on 11 May 2022, a free TaxSaver extension has been applied to valid tickets due to the application of the 20% reduction in ticket prices for customers of Dublin Bus, Luas, Bus Éireann, Iarnród Éireann, and Go‐Ahead Ireland. FAQ’s on this extension from TaxSaver are available here.


As an employee, you are not liable for tax or PRSI on the cost of the travel pass your employer provides. TaxSaver employees can save between 31%-52% in tax, PRSI and USC. You can use this savings calculator to find out how much you can save with a TaxSaver Commuter Ticket.

You can see the ticket prices at the TaxSaver website. The prices on the eForm are based on these.


An employee can make what is known as a salary sacrifice which means their employer gives them a travel pass that is exempt from tax by the Revenue Commissioners. This arrangement must meet the following conditions:

  • There must be a change to the terms and conditions of employment, i.e. exercising a choice of benefit instead of salary
  • The change must be recorded in writing
  • The alteration cannot be backdated
  • Employees cannot exchange the benefit for cash
  • Employees cannot choose the benefit over cash more than once a year except with their employer’s consent.

Note: Orders must be processed by NSSO for your department. Individual staff members cannot make orders. Please be aware the individual department’s in-house policy and legislation may overrule eligibility as given by NSSO.

You need to register your Leap card online at as soon as you receive it. This is the only way to request a replacement card if the original card is ever lost, stolen, or damaged. You are responsible if your card is not registered and is subsequently lost or stolen.

How to apply

To submit an application, you can log into HR self-service. To attach supporting documents, to view progress on an existing case, or to submit a manual application form, you can log into the case management system. Please note: only officers without HR self-service access may submit manual forms.

You should apply for the scheme online through your HR self-service account where possible. If you are a remote worker, if you want to apply in Irish, or if you are unable to access the NSSO website, you can request a PDF form via email from

Please check our Travel Pass document for the latest travel provider requirements before your make your application. You will not be able to apply without meeting the requirements outlined there.

Log in to your HR self-service account using your NSSO user ID and password. Click on the travel pass link to direct you to the travel pass eForm screen and then click the travel pass application button..

If you have a general query about the travel pass scheme, read this page, our Travel Pass FAQ, and the latest information on the providers' websites. If you still need to request information then email with the subject line ‘Travel Pass Query’.

If you have an urgent query about a submitted or rejected eForm request, call the Employee Schemes Team on 0818 107 100.

Please note:

The eForm will not be available outside the specified windows.

Travel pass applications cannot be accepted outside of the January to December or July to June windows without a prior policy arrangement with your department, or written approval from your local HR and finance unit approving the application for a TaxSaver card outside of the specified application windows.

NSSO can decline any application outside the two travel pass annual application windows.

It is your responsibility to be fully informed of your department’s travel pass policy.

Cancelling an existing travel pass

If you are considering exiting the service, retiring, or taking a career break, you need to be aware of the cancellation regulations for going off-pay. Further details can be found on this page.

Please fill in this cancellation form and email it to with the subject line ‘Cancellation request of Travel Pass for (Month cancellation should be effective from)’

This is a one-year contract with terms and conditions. Cancellations, lost/stolen, and un-registered cards may result in shortfalls, delays in processing and possible losses to you.

If you wish to cancel your annual travel pass mid-year, you may have to pay for cancelling ahead of time. NSSO will calculate this and notify you of it when cancelling the pass.

You must make cancellation requests before the 5th of the month before the date you wish to cancel, and the cancellation will only be valid from the 1st of the month. For example, a cancellation before 5 March 2021 will become effective from 1 April 2021.

Expected timelines

After completing the travel pass form, it can take up to an hour before you receive an automated Case ID. Please do not create another case during that time.

It may take a month for deductions from your salary to appear after you receive your travel pass.

Errors on your application forms or photo will lead to delays in processing and may cause losses for you.

If you have a renewal request outside of the two annual application windows, it may be honoured subject to your department’s policies.

You must submit all renewal requests to the NSSO Increments and Schemes team before the 15th of the month prior to expiration. For example, make your renewal request by 14 March to be effective from 1 April.

NSSO is not responsible for any delays in delivering your travel pass due to the travel providers. We make every effort to deliver to you in a timely fashion. Please ensure you follow all the necessary timelines and requirements to minimise delays.

Please check voluntary deductions regularly to ensure they are correct.