Giving you a helping hand to work

Workwise travel support gives eligible jobseekers and apprentices 50% off most Network West Midlands travel passes for up to three months when they start a new job. You can also apply if you are increasing your hours to 16 or more. 

To apply, you must first read the “Important Applicant Information” to confirm your eligibility and to check the scheme meets your needs.

To complete your application you must use our online portal. Unfortunately, we cannot accept applications, including evidence only, made by post, e-mail or in person.

Important Applicant Information (Eligibility Criteria)

To be eligible to apply for workwise travel support, you must be able to meet the following requirements:

  • Live in a West Midlands Local Authority area: Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall and Wolverhampton. This is the eligible area.
    • you meet the above condition if you are registered with a Jobcentre Plus office within the West Midlands area as above 
  • Be unemployed or working less than 16 per week prior to applying for workwise travel support
  • Have not received workwise travel support for new employment between 1st April and 31st March in the current year.
  • Be aged 16 to 65
  • Provide a valid National Insurance Number
  • Provide a valid contact number and e-mail address.
  • Be working a total minimum of 16 hours per week
  • Ensure they apply before or within 5 working days of starting new employment or apprenticeship
  • Provide a recent, digital passport style photograph
  • Must not be on the Department for Work and Pensions Work Programme, Work Choice or Youth Promise Plus

Important information regarding the Network West Midlands Travel Pass.

If your application for workwise travel support is accepted, you will be offered 50% off an eligible Network West Midlands travel pass for up to three months. You will purchase either a bus (only) or bus, train and tram travel pass, but your pass will only be valid for travel within specified zones or areas of the West Midlands. We do not offer any travel pass that would permit travel by bus, train or tram outside of the West Midlands. If your place of work is outside of the West Midlands, we may be able to help you travel up to the “border” stations or stops, but a portion of your journey (and return) would need to be paid by you.

We’re sorry but workwise travel support can’t help:

  • If you’re being helped by another programme that provides travel support (e.g. Jobcentre Plus referral to the Work Programme, Work Choice or GBS Youth Employment Initiative)
  • With travel costs for attending training programmes
  • If you have already started your job and it has been more than five days since this date.
  • If you’ve already received help from us from 1st April to 31st March in the current year.
  • If you live outside of the eligible area.

Criteria for disqualification

You won’t be able to receive workwise travel support if you don’t abide by our terms and conditions

Apply Online

Congratulations on finding a job! You will now be able to apply for a discounted Network West Midlands travel pass to use within the Network West Midlands area.

Discounts are available for 'bus only' and 'bus, train and tram' travel passes. Discounts are currently not available on 'train only' travel passes, but you may find that purchasing a discounted 'bus, train and tram' travel pass is less expensive than a full price 'train only' travel pass for the first three months.

How to Apply

All applications for workwise travel support must be made online through our application portal.

Before applying, please ensure you have all the information you will be asked for, including:

  1. You must first read the “Important Applicant Information” section above to confirm you meet the eligibility requirements.
  2. Your National Insurance number.
  3. A valid e-mail address and contact telephone number.
  4. Digital copies of the following documents to upload:
  • Proof of unemployment (if applicable)
    If you were claiming any kind of benefits prior to finding a job, you will be asked to upload evidence of this, such as a letter from the Department for Work and Pensions, from your Job Centre, or an e-mail from your work coach confirming your claim period and entitlement.
  • Confirmation of your job offer.
    This can be confirmation on a company letter-head, or e-mail from your line manager or HR Advisor confirming the appointment to your role, and must also confirm your official start date and weekly contracted hours. If you do not have confirmation of this, we may put your application on hold, and ask you to contact your employer to obtain this confirmation.
  • An image of yourself in colour passport-sized style. Please do not use images which have filters (snap chat), or are in black & white)

To start your application, click “Apply online” below.

Apply online


Q: What is workwise travel support?

A: Workwise travel support gives eligible jobseekers and apprentices 50% off eligible Network West Midlands travel passes for up to three months when they start a new job, or increase their hours to 16 or more per week if already employed.

Q: Can I apply over the phone/e-mail or in person?

A: No, you must apply online

Q: Can workwise travel support assist me if my place of work is outside of the West Midlands area?

A: Unfortunately, we cannot provide a discount to any travel passes for destinations outside of the West Midlands. You may be eligible to purchase a travel pass which could help you get to “border” stations or stops, but beyond this you would need to purchase and pay for any additional onward travel, including any return journey to bring you back into the West Midlands zonal area. Please e-mail us at for travel advice prior to applying if you’re unsure

Q: I have paid for my ticket online, when should it arrive?

A: Your ticket can take up to 10 days to arrive to you, after this period of time has passed contact the Customer Service Centre on 0121 214 7436 for an update on the progress of your application.

Q: What if my Swift card does not work?

A: Contact the Customer Service Centre on 0121 214 7436.

Q: What do I do if I lose my ticket?

A: Contact the Customer Service Centre on 0121 214 7436. 

Lost or stolen travel passes and Swift cards can be replaced but please take into consideration when your card is due to expire as it may not be reasonable to replace travel passes which have a short validity period left on them.

Your replacement travel pass/Swift card will expire on the original expiry date on the lost travel pass/Swift card. A replacement fee of £7.50 will be payable by credit or debit card at the time of notifying West Midlands Combined Authority. 

Q: Can I use my existing Swift card?

A: The 50% discount offer cannot be transferred onto your current Swift card yet, but we are working to make this possible. Until then we can only issue new cards. Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

You will need to keep hold of the new Swift card we send you, when you come to purchase your second or third month ticket, we will not send you a new Swift card, and you will need to “collect” your purchase by scanning your existing Swift card at your nearest Swift collector. You can also use the Swift app on Android to “collect” your purchase.

Q: What do I do if I have an existing Swift card that has credit on it?

A: We may be able to arrange for your new card to start when your credit runs out, contact the Customer Service Centre on 0121 214 7436.

Q: If my job falls through, what do I do with the ticket?

A: You can make one application only per year, so please contact Customer Service Centre on 0121 214 7436 for advice.

Q: Can I use my travel pass/Swift card for social purposes?
A: Yes, you can use your ticket for purposes outside of commuting to work. There are no restrictions on your travel pass/Swift card.

Q: Will my employer know I have received workwise travel support?

A: Sometimes it may be necessary to contact your employer to verify your employment details. 

However, if you provide sufficient supporting documentation with your application we will not have to contact your employer. Network West Midlands reserves the right to contact employers to verify information provided on application forms.

Q: Do I have to supply a brand new photo or can I use an existing one such as my Photocard?
A: A new digital photograph is required. Guidance on acceptable photos is provided on the application portal.

Q: How do I buy further passes once workwise support has finished?

A: For a Swift card: You can register your card online and top it up with further travel.

For a paper network pass: you can use your photo card to purchase further passes from any train station, travel agent or Travel Information Centre.

Q: How do I buy an Add On ticket for the train?

A: Add-On tickets are used only to extend train journey to out-of-county train stations – they cannot be used on the bus. You can buy Add-On tickets for your network pass from any train station or Travel Information Centre. Please note Add-On tickets are not eligible for any discount and you would pay full-price for them.

Q: Can more than one person per household be helped?

A: Yes, there are no restrictions to in terms of the number of people who have applied from the same household.

Q: Can someone else apply for workwise travel support on my behalf?

A: You need to make the application yourself. Your Jobcentre Plus work coach can provide assistance with your application, but it is your responsibility and you are liable for the information provided on the application form.

 Q: Can I apply for workwise travel support if I don’t have a permanent address?

 A: Sorry you cannot. You need to provide the address where you live and where you will be travelling to work. This is where your travel pass/Swift card will be sent to. You must also live within an eligible area, please see “Important Application Information” section for further information.

Q: What if I don’t have a National Insurance number?

A: Unfortunately this would exclude you from workwise travel support.


Q: What if I am not claiming benefits or my partner claims for the family?

A: You can apply for workwise travel support whether you are in receipt of benefits or not. We require a self-certification from you if you are on benefits.

Q: What if I don’t have digital confirmation of unemployment benefits?

A: You will be able to continue through the application process but may need to upload your photograph again in this section to allow you to continue.

Once your application has been successfully submitted, you will need to contact your work coach or the DWP to obtain proof of your benefits and claim term to send us by e-mail at This may delay your application while we are awaiting additional information from you.

Q: How am I to pay for the transport until my workwise travel pass arrives? 

A: Workwise is not able to cover travel costs whilst you wait for your ticket to arrive. Your Jobcentre work coach may be able to provide help. Please contact your Job Centre for further information.

Q: How do I register my card on the Swift website?

A: Please visit, you will be asked to enter your card number and postcode to access your account. 

Q: Workwise used to provide free travel passes, so why do I have to pay?

A: Funding for the free travel pass has ceased. However, we have a new offer for most travel passes at 50% discount for the first three months of your new employment. 

Q: Can I apply for workwise from my phone or tablet?

A: Yes, although our site is mobile-friendly, not all mobile or smartphones may support the functionality of our online application process, so if you encounter any issues or errors, in the first instance, please use a laptop or PC to complete your application.



Contact us

If you’d like some more information about how workwise travel support could help you, contact us on the following:

Tel: 0121 214 7436
Write to us: WorkWise, 16 Summer Lane, Birmingham, B19 3SD


Our team works closely with Jobcentres across the West Midlands.

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