Students say they are forking out hundreds on replacement bus passes

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Students say they are forking out hundreds on replacement bus passes insurance

OUTRAGED student bus users have started a petition after having to fork out more than £300 for a replacement pass.

Students using the Stagecoach service pay £301 for a Unibus pass, which stops at Warwick and Coventry universities and allows them to use late night buses.

But Stagecoach has changed its policy over automatically issuing replacement passes for those lost at a cost of £25 in a bid to combat fraud.

Some students have had to pay the full cost for a replacement – prompting much anger.

The petition – which has amassed nearly 150 signatures since started on November 29 – reads: “Stagecoach has declared in their shop it will not be reissuing any lost or damaged Unibus passes. Therefore, if you were to lose your bus pass mid-term, you would have no choice but to buy a completely new one – mounting up to an obscene £602 for something which sometimes cannot be avoided.

“We appreciate in the past Stagecoach may have encountered some issues with people duplicating passes, however we feel it is completely unjust that the rest of us have to suffer for this given there is no alternative service or way of us getting onto campus.

“We should not have to spend an entire academic year living in fear of accidentally losing our bus pass as we simply cannot afford a replacement.”

But Stagecoach say they are not always charging students if they lose their pass, but have stopped giving automatic replacements.

They say due to fraudulent activity and duplications they are considering requests on an individual basis.

A spokesman told the Observer: “During the first few weeks of the new student year we have seen a significantly higher volume of requests for replacement Unibus passes. During that time, it has become clear that our replacement policy is being abused by some people and we believe that some of these passes are being used fraudulently.

“As a result, we are no longer offering the automatic replacement that was previously available for a £25 fee. Instead, we will review each request on an individual basis, taking into account a number of different considerations. We are committed to handling these requests as fairly as possible and we fully understand that genuine losses can occur.

“We would, as always, urge any students with a Unibus pass to insure the ticket under their household insurance policy to cover them in the event that they might lose it. If any students suspect that their pass has been stolen, we would encourage them to report it to the police.”