Public Transport

Who is allowed to travel on public transport?

You should walk or cycle if you can. However where this is not possible, you can use public transport or drive. If you are using public transport, you should follow the safer travel guidance for passengers.


Should people wear face coverings on public transport?

It is the law that you must wear a face covering when travelling in England on a:

  • bus or coach
  • train or tram
  • ferry or hovercraft or other vessel
  • aircraft
  • cable car
  • in an enclosed transport hub, such as a train or bus station

If you do not wear a face covering you will be breaking the law and could be fined £100, or £50 if you pay the fine within 14 days. As announced, the government will bring forward changes to mean that for repeat offenders these fines would double at each offence up to a maximum value of £3,200.

Please be aware that some people are exempt, and do not have to wear a face covering on public transport, including for health, age or equality reasons.

The government have published guidance for those making face coverings at home, to help illustrate the process.

A face covering is not the same as the surgical masks or respirators used as part of personal protective equipment by healthcare and other workers; these should continue to be reserved for those who need them to protect against risks in their workplace such as health and care workers and those in industrial settings like those exposed to dust hazards.


Will a face covering stop me getting COVID-19?

The evidence suggests that face coverings can help us protect each other and reduce the spread of the disease from someone who is suffering from coronavirus, but not showing symptoms.

That is why it is important to wear a face covering on public transport and it is required by law. It is currently mandatory to wear face coverings in shops, supermarkets, indoor shopping centres, banks, building societies, post offices, indoor transport hubs, museums, galleries, cinemas, places of worship, and public libraries. Relevant guidance on face coverings is available here.

To protect yourself, you should also continue to follow guidance on meeting safely with others and wash your hands regularly.