Taxi Subsidy Scheme
Updated June 2015
Interstate Travel Vouchers must be used if you are Intending to Travel Interstate, including Queanbeyan
ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme (TSS) Smartcards do not work in interstate taxis. Only taxis with ACT registered license plates can process TSS Smartcards.
If you are an ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme (TSS) member and you wish to use an interstate taxi (including a NSW registered taxi in Queanbeyan), you must use an Interstate Travel Voucher to pay for your subsidised fare.
It is essential that TSS members talk to the taxi driver before they start their travel to ensure the taxi driver will accept an ACT TSS Interstate Travel Voucher.
Contact the Taxi Subsidy Scheme on 6207 1930, 6205 1012 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are intending to travel interstate and Interstate Travel Vouchers will be issued to you.
What is it?
The ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme (TSS) provides financial assistance to ACT residents with a disability or significant mobility restriction preventing them using public and community transport. The TSS supports social inclusion and economic participation of community members who would otherwise be at risk of social isolation. The TSS is intended to assist members attend essential activities such as medical appointments, employment commitments, and social and family gatherings. The TSS is not intended to meet all transport costs of its members.
Who is eligible?
To be eligible for the ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme, you must:
- have a severe or profound activity limitation that prevents you from using public transport. Such limitations include:
- severe mobility limitations;
- legal blindness or severe vision impairment;
- cognitive, intellectual or psychiatric disability; and
- severe and uncontrolled epilepsy.
- be a permanent resident of the ACT, or an asylum seeker with proof of status from Companion House; and
- not be a member of an interstate taxi subsidy scheme.
How do I apply?
Application forms are available online or by contacting the Taxi Subsidy Scheme Office on the details below.
Please note that Part B of the application form must be completed and signed by an authorised medical practitioner or occupational therapist.
Who runs it?
Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate
ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme
GPO Box 158
CANBERRA ACT 2601
Phone: (02) 6205 1012 or (02) 6207 1930
What is a Smartcard?
The Smartcard is a convenient electronic means to utilise the TSS. Your Smartcard contains your name; membership number; membership expiry date; and a thumbnail photo of yourself.
Who is the provider for the Smartcard?
Cabcharge Australia Ltd is the provider for the Smartcard in the ACT. It was established in 1976 with the express purpose of providing payment services to the Australian Taxi Industry
How do I use my Smartcard?
At the start of the journey you will need to notify the taxi driver that you are using your Smartcard. You will be requested to present your Smartcard to process the fare. The driver will press the TSS button and place your Smartcard over the contactless Smartcard reader, which will calculate your portion of the fare payable. Please ensure the driver returns your Smartcard, and provides you with a receipt if required.
What is a Smartcard reader?
The Smartcard reader is an electronic device which calculates the subsidy and the balance payable. The reader also collects information on your trip, such as the date, time, origin, destination, and fare amount.
Do I need to activate my Smartcard?
No, your Smartcard has been pre-activated for immediate use.
Do I have to carry identification when I travel as a TSS member?
Yes, you must carry proof of identification, such as a Medicare or Pensioner Concession Card, and produce it upon request by the taxi driver.
Can I have additional passengers in the taxi with me?
Yes, additional passengers are permitted to ride with you.
Can I accrue a taxi fare debt for my portion of the fare and pay the balance with my Smartcard?
No, the TSS does not condone the accruing of taxi fare debts by its members, and the Smartcard should only be used when the member pays his or her contribution at the end of the trip.
Can I be reimbursed by the TSS if I forget my Smartcard?
No, the TSS does not reimburse members. It is your responsibility to have your Smartcard on you at all times when you travel in a taxi as a TSS member.
Can I use my Smartcard to pay a fare to send or receive a parcel by taxi?
No, this is not permitted. The TSS is intended for passenger transport only, and you must be in the taxi to utilise the TSS.
What happens if my Smartcard has expired or there are no more trips left on it?
If your Smartcard has expired, or has zero trips available, you are required to pay full fare.
Is there a manual or backup system?
Yes, fallback vouchers are carried by all taxi drivers in the ACT. They are to be utilised if the electronic system is unavailable or there is an issue with your Smartcard (excluding Smartcards which have expired, been cancelled, or have insufficient trips).
What should I do if I lose or damage my Smartcard, or it is stolen?
Please contact the TSS Office as soon as possible on the contact details provided below. A statutory declaration will be sent to you to complete and you will be required to pay the full fare for your taxi trips until you receive your new Smartcard. A replacement card will take approximately 10 working days to be sent to you.
Can I use my Smartcard when I travel interstate?
No. Whenever you travel in an interstate taxi (including a NSW registered taxi in Queanbeyan), you will not be able to use your Smartcard. If you plan on travelling interstate, please contact the TSS Office at least two weeks prior to your expected travel date to allow time to receive your interstate vouchers.
What happens if I utilise a Queanbeyan taxi in the ACT?
Unfortunately, Queanbeyan taxis do not have the software to support the ACT’s TSS and full fare is payable unless an interstate voucher is utilised.
Where can I get a passport size photo and how much will it cost?
Passport size photographs can be obtained from:
- most Australia Post offices;
- camera shops;
- photo booths in major shopping centres; and
- personal digital cameras or mobile phones, printed on photo quality paper.
The cost of the photograph will vary depending on who takes your photograph and where you get your photograph developed.
Why can’t I get my photograph taken and/or submit my application at Canberra Connect?
Unfortunately Canberra Connect does not have the required software to support this program.
How will I know the number of trips I have left?
At the end of your journey you can ask the taxi driver for a receipt. On the bottom of the receipt it will display the number of trips left on your Smartcard. Alternatively you can contact the TSS Office for further information.
Will my Smartcard expire?
Yes, the expiry date on your Smartcard corresponds with your membership expiry date. A renewal reminder will be sent to you four to six weeks prior to your membership expiring.
What happens if my medical condition deteriorates?
Please contact the TSS Office by telephone on 6205 1012 or 6207 1930, or via email at email@example.com
Will I have to send in another photo when my card expires?
Yes, you will be required to submit a new photo.
Do all members of the ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme sharing a multicab pay a lift fee?
Unfortunately, the current software does not support the processing of more than one lift fee in a single transaction, or the processing of a lift fee only. Lift fee only vouchers can be obtained from the Road Transport Authority by calling 6207 1381.
What should I do if change my residential address?
Please notify the TSS Office as soon as possible if you change your residential address and/or your postal address. Contact details can be found below.
What happens if I misuse my Smartcard?
Any misuse of your Smartcard or interstate vouchers is viewed as a serious offence, and could result in your membership being suspended or withdrawal, and/or legal action taken against you.
Where can I get further information?
The ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme Office can be contacted via telephone, email or mail.
Phone: 02 6205 1012 or 6207 1930
ACT Taxi Subsidy Scheme
GPO Box 158
Canberra ACT 2601
Please note counter facilities are not available at the TSS Office.