Posted: Thu 12th Sep 2019

Transport for Wales take down new concessionary travel card site due to ‘exceptionally high volume of hits’

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Thursday, Sep 12th, 2019

Transport for Wales (TfW) have taken down the online application portal for a new concessionary travel card after an ‘exceptionally high volume of hits’ caused problems for users.

The Concessionary Travel Passes, which are available to residents over the age of 60 or those who have a qualifying disability in Wales, allow free travel on all registered local bus services and those that start or finish their journey in Wales.

The scheme was introduced by the Welsh Government back in 2009, with a lifespan of 10 years encoded into each pass.

This means that all current cards are due to expire on December 31st 2019 as they will no longer be recognised by electric readers on buses.

A new section on TfW’s website was launched at 10.30am on Wednesday for online applications, bosses didn’t issue any information or advice to residents as they wanted to manage the number of users hitting the website.

There are around 750,000 cards holders in Wales and the fear was that by issuing information about the launch there would be widespread ‘panic’ with large numbers of cardholders apply at the same time.

The application portal did crash, TfW removed it from the website, a statement said:

“We’re experiencing an exceptionally high volume of hits to our new Concessionary Travel Card site. Due to these high volumes, we know that some of you are experiencing problems in accessing our new website.

To help with this, we’ve taken down the new online application form so that we can boost the capacity to better manage the very high volumes.

Please bear with us – we’ll be back up and running shortly.

Your current pass is still valid and will continue to be accepted for travel until 31 December 2019.”

 

Lee Robinson, North Wales Development Director for Transport for Wales said on Wednesday, “Today is the first day of our new concessionary travel card application website going live.

“We’ve witnessed an exceptional volume of traffic to our site, with cardholders wanting to apply for their new cards straight away. Whilst many people have successfully completed the process today, we’re also aware that many have encountered problems through the application process.

We’ve taken down the portal to allow us to increase the capacity of the website significantly so we can resume normal service as soon as possible. In the meantime, we’re thanking people for their patience and advising people not to worry as there’s no urgent need to renew today.

We’ve been working with all 22 Welsh local authorities, the Older Person’s Commissioner’s Office and charity organisations across Wales to be able to offer support for cardholders needing help to apply.

This is the first day and the renewal programme will be over the next 3 and half months – current bus passes are valid until 31 December 2019.”

At some point you will be able to renew via https://tfw.gov.wales/

Top pic: Ken Skates AM and Lee Robinson at Wrexham Station.

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