Frequently Asked Questions
Below are answers to some of our most asked questions. If your questions isn't listed, or you need further information please Contact Us.
I use your buses frequently - can I save money on my travel?
Yes! We offer a wide range of tickets, with unlimited travel from less than £1.20 a day. Just click on Tickets for more information. There you will find a range of tickets to suit all needs from a day ticket to a month ticket for the regular bus user.
I'm disabled - will I be able to use your services?
Most of our services in South Yorkshire are now operated by low floor, easy access buses making it easy for those with mobility impairments and wheelchair users to get on board. For more information, visit our Bus Accessibility section. If you require a little extra assistance on our buses, you may find our Safe Journey Card useful - you can download your own copy to print or call us on 0845 604 5460 and we'll send one out to you.
Can I bring my buggy on board?
Yes, most of our buses are suitable for bringing a buggy on board. Please visit our buggies section in bus accessibility for more information.
Why didn't my bus arrive on time?
We strive to provide a service that is 100% reliable; unfortunately there are many reasons why your bus may arrive late. Roadworks, diversions, road closures, heavy traffic and adverse weather conditions are among the main reasons for late running. When there are major problems it can affect all routes, not just those directly on the problem. The reasons for late running can often be at the other side of your town/city or a result of a problem earlier in the day. We do account for peak-time traffic in our schedules, but unfortunately cannot take into account unexpected problems.
We know how frustrating it is when your bus arrives late. You can be assured we are doing all we can to get your bus to you on time - we post major known problems on our website and provide frequent updates through our twitter feed to keep you informed.
At what age do children have to pay their fare?
Children over 5 need to pay a fare on our buses - this is currently a flat 70p fare in South Yorkshire, half fare on services outside the South Yorkshire boundary.
My child is 11, will he/she need a bus pass to claim a discount?
Yes, from the age of 11 children need to show a valid MegaTravel 11-16 pass to purchase their 70p child fare. Visit the Young Person's page in the Tickets section for more information. If the pass is not carried, we are required to charge full adult fare by SYPTE who administer the scheme. We would encourage all parents to ensure where possible that young people carry the pass and that it is part of their routine.
Why didn't your driver have any change?
Our drivers have a limited float with which to give change - unfortunately this can be easily exhausted if one or two passengers pay for low value fares with a note, especially at the start of a driver's shift. We are wary of providing our drivers with higher floats for security reasons. It always helps if you can provide the correct payment for your journey - contact us for the fare if you are unsure.
You may like to try purchasing your First ticket off the bus to avoid this problem, such as picking up a FirstWeek or FirstMonth ticket on-line or from local SYPTE Travel Information Centres. Not only that, the more passengers that purchase their tickets off the bus the quicker your bus journey!
If we are unable to provide change your driver will retain your payment, issue a ticket as normal and will request that you seek the change before alighting the bus. If this is still not possible, change can be collected from an agreed location by contacting our Customer Services team on 01709 566000.
Why are your tickets not valid on other operators vehicles?
We offer a wide range of ticketing products to our customers but accept that at times, for a number of reasons, customers may require use of another operator or mode of transport. In those instances it may be appropriate to purchase a South Yorkshire TravelMaster ticket which are available through local Travel Information Centres.
Do I have to pay with cash?
On bus ticketing remains cash based because of the low price of most transactions. Customers wishing to buy off bus can do so for longer period 'saver' tickets using our on-line services or through Travel Information Centres. We are developing other systems which we hope to introduce offering cash-less transactions in the near future.
I reach retirement soon - how can I claim my free travel pass?
The English National Conessionary scheme is administered by your local authority. In South Yorkshire, you will need to contact Travel South Yorkshire. The following link - which opens in a new window - will help explain the process to get your pass.
Do First offer discounted travel for University students?
Yes! If you're a student, we offer a variety of tickets to suit your needs, whether it's occasional travel or a 'frequent flyer'. We offer a University student single fare in Sheffield on selected services, as well as FirstWeek Student and FirstTerm Sheffield Student passes that give unlimited travel and big savings over the regular adult tickets. Visit the Student Bus Travel page in the Tickets section for more information.
Why have you changed my route/timetable?
We are constantly reviewing our network to reflect changing travel patterns and demands. Your route or timetable may change because of a reduction in demand or because the resources will see greater use elsewhere on our network. We never change a route or timetable lightly, and consult with relevant local authorities whenever possible. Most changes are made in light of customer comments received or following some form of market research.
Will you change your route to serve [location]?
Our network is designed to provide high quality services wherever there is demand for them. Generally, if we do not currently serve a particular location it is because there is not sufficient demand to sustain a bus service, or it is simply not possible to run a bus there. We are however constantly reviewing our network and looking for new opportunities such as new developments where a First service could be suitable.
My bus is always full?
We have a wide range of vehicle types and aim to provide space for everyone who wishes to travel on every journey. We monitor all of our services and where demand exists for extra journeys aim to provide them where possible - unfortunately, this cannot happen overnight as we need to plan the service, provide extra vehicles & drivers etc. Delays caused by roadworks, adverse weather etc. can mean more passengers than normal on particular service. Occasionally we may need to provide an alternative vehicle on your route - for example if the bus intended for your service is stuck in traffic or has broken down.
Why did your bus drive past me?
We're sorry if we missed you. It is possible that the bus you intended to catch was full or that our driver simply didn't see you. You may find it useful to read our guide to catching our buses to ensure you are seen.
Why did your driver not wait for me?
We're sorry if it appears our driver left without you. Driving a bus is a difficult job, and your driver had probably already committed to their manoeuvre and it may not be safe for them to stop and/or pull back into the stop. Please remember when a bus is pulling away from a stop, our drivers have to be aware of everything around them - including the traffic they are merging with - so they may not see you.
Why do I see buses saying 'Sorry Not In Service'?
This can be for a number of reasons. We provide extra buses at busy times so you may see buses heading to their starting point (or returning to depot at the end of shift). If we are experiencing delays, we may send buses empty to the other end of a route to ensure that everyone along the route is still provided with a service. Our buses undergo regular maintenance so you may also spot one of our engineers running a test.
Are First able to sponsor me/our team?
First has a Charity and Sponsorship committee who accept applications from individuals and groups across the country. Use the link below to find out more and apply - there have been many successful applicants from South Yorkshire since the committee was set up. We wish you luck in your application!