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The Scottish Government is to give ‘detailed consideration’ to proposals to introduce free foot passenger ferry travel to those under 22 living in the Outer Hebrides, Orkney and Shetland.

The commitment was contained in Transport Scotland’s new long-term strategy document published yesterday (Thursday, February 1).

This is welcome news for campaigners who have argued that inter-island ferry transport is the equivalent of taking a bus, travel for the under 22s that became free in 2022.

The proposal to extend the concession to ferries differs from the free bus travel scheme for under 22s as it would apply solely to island residents travelling on inter-island ferries as foot passengers.

A 2021 impact assessment spiked plans for free ferry travel, concluding that it could not form part of the free bus travel plans.

Image credit: CalMac