TAXI TRANSPORT SUBSIDY SCHEME (TTSS)

The NSW Government’s TTSS system provides for a discount of 50% off the metered fare to a maximum of $60 for eligible passengers with disabilities.

TTSS participants have been informed that:

  • The new $60 cap dockets can be used from 1 July 2016 onwards
  • From 1 December 2016, $30 dockets should no longer be accepted for TTSS travel
  • From 1 July 2016 to 30 November 2016, TTSS $30 dockets can still be used, but only to the limit of the $30 cap
  • Only one docket can be used per trip.

WATs drivers should be aware:

  • The final date for submitting the old dockets to networks is 7 January 2017
  • The final date $30 dockets may be submitted to Speedscan is 15 February 2017.

For more information on the changes, please contact the TTSS information helpline on 1800 200 592 or visit: www.transport.nsw.gov.au/customers/taxis/ttss

In order to be eligible for fare assistance under TTSS, the disability must be severe and permanent and come within the following categories of eligible disabilities:

  • Permanent inability to walk
  • Total and permanent dependence on a wheelchair
  • Severe mobility problems which require the permanent use of complex walking aids or constant assistance of another person
  • Total loss of vision or severely impaired sight
  • Severe and uncontrollable epilepsy
  • Severe intellectual disability causing social unacceptable behaviour or requiring constant assistance on public transport

Visit the Transport for NSW website for more information.

In 1981, the International Year of the Disabled, the NSW Taxi Industry became the first mode of public transport to offer services for those with special needs.

Despite early concerns from able-bodied passengers towards the larger vehicle types used for Wheelchair Accessible Taxis, the Industry persisted and continued to invest in services for people with disabilities.

In 1983, the first Wheelchair Accessible Taxi Driver, Paul Bolt, was awarded an Order of Australia Medal for his services. He later won the prestigious Taxi Driver of the Year award from the International Taxicab, Limousine and Paratransit Association (ITLP).

However, there was much about those early experiences which helped shape the Wheelchair Accessible Taxis Service (WATS) that we have today.

The first was the establishment of 'Zero200', a centralised booking service which automatically offers the booking to the closest WAT regardless of its network.

The second was the development of the vehicle itself. In 2005, the taxi industry worked with Flash Cabs Australia to develop a taxi-specific vehicle which could carry people with disabilities as well as abled passengers. This vehicle is now the template for WATs. A WAT costs around three times the price of a regular taxi – despite this the NSW Taxi Industry has invested ensuring that at least 10% of the fleet is accessible.

To support this fleet growth, specific training modules have been developed to train drivers in loading and unloading techniques and other customer service requirements for people with disabilities. Today the centralised booking number 8332 0200 receives around 4,000 bookings each week, which is in addition to more than 15,000 private bookings.

Presently more than 440,000 wheelchair accessible taxi journeys are undertaken each year.

Click here for the latest Wheelchair Accessible Taxi Service (WATS) Taxi Driver Radio Hiring Procedures Handbook.