Bus Services Operators' Grant

The Bus Service Operators' Grant (BSOG) scheme is intended to benefit passengers by helping operators keep their fares low and enabling them to run services that might not otherwise be commercially viable.

Transport Scotland administers the grant as a way of contributing to the maintenance of the nation's bus network. The BSOG is paid directly to bus operators and to community transport organisations, helping everyone be as connected by public transport as possible.

Prior to 1 April 2010, BSOG was administered on a UK-wide basis by the Department for Transport.

How the scheme works

Bus operators must register with the BSOG scheme before they can submit a claim for the grant. Commercial bus operators, most of whom claim yearly in advance, receive monthly payments on estimates throughout their claim year. They then submit a certified claim form once the year has ended where any adjustments between anticipated and actual miles can be made.

Since April 2011 all operators claim years aligned with the financial year (1 April - 31 March).

Community transport organisations always claim twice yearly in arrears for set 6-month periods (1 October - 31 March and 1 April - 30 September).

There are information packs available for commercial bus operators and community bus operators.

Calculating payments

BSOG payments are based on distance travelled and calculated using eligible kilometres X payment rate. The kilometres between depots and the start of the route do not count towards the grant.

BSOG currently contains incentives for low carbon vehicles with 10.1p added to the payment rate of 14.4p making the total 24.5p.

The letter to commercial operators gives further information on the LCV incentive.

Since 1 April 2012 DRT/ flexible "dial-a-bus" services which are available to the general public and registered with the Traffic Commissioner as local bus services have qualified for the BSOG. For further information please refer to the DRT Information Sheet DRT01-S.

The Scottish Government continues to keep BSOG under review to align it better with its strategic objectives.

Contact information

For enquiries about the Bus Service Operators’ Grant, please email: bsog@transport.gov.scot