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Win a free ride … every day for a year!

Travelwise, the people who brought you the office bike, are now offering one lucky reader an annual, all zones bus pass worth £730. Plus news of tax breaks for bus travellers!

Published on October 14th 2008.

Win a free ride … every day for a year!

Fed up with soaring fuel prices and traffic jams? Catching the bus into town cuts the stress of driving and the hassle of finding a parking space – and we’re giving you the chance to win a free Solo bus pass for all Merseyside zones.

As this week is TravelWise Week, our friends at TravelWise are giving away a year’s free bus travel so you can go anywhere in Merseyside without spending a penny. And by using the bus, you will also be doing your bit for the environment, easing congestion and reducing your carbon footprint.

All this week, the TravelWise team have been thanking people across Merseyside for using the bus by giving relaxing mini-massages to bus passengers.

The Merseyside Local Transport Plan (LTP) Partnership has also chosen this week to launch a tax-free bus travel initiative, which gives workers across Merseyside the chance to save hundreds of pounds a year on bus travel.

The tax-free bus travel scheme works by allowing employers to purchase an annual bus pass for staff, who make monthly or weekly repayments direct to their employer from their gross salary. As the repayments are made before tax and national insurance deductions, staff will save money by paying less tax and national insurance overall.

The exact annual savings for each individual will vary, depending on their personal tax position and the price of the bus pass they use. However, a bus commuter, who is a higher rate tax payer using a £649 annual Solo pass for all Merseyside areas, will save £290.23.

Neil Scales, Chair of the LTP and Chief Executive and Director General of Merseytravel, said: “Thousands of people across Merseyside could benefit from this tax break. The scheme clearly has money-saving benefits for people choosing to commute by bus. However, if we look at the bigger picture, taking the bus into town - especially during peak times - can also have a beneficial impact on the environment by easing congestion and reducing your carbon footprint.

“The introduction of the scheme demonstrates our commitment to creating long-term policies and investments, which will enable the transport network to support economic growth. We believe that this tax-break for workers will help the future of sustainable travel in Merseyside by encouraging more drivers to leave their car at home and catch the bus to work instead.”

The scheme includes Merseytravel Solo tickets and bus passes provided by operators, such as Arriva or Stagecoach.

The announcement will be welcome news to the 25 per cent of people in Merseyside who – according to recent research by the LTP partnership - have switched to the bus for some journeys as a result of increasing fuel prices.

Whether you’re going shopping or commuting to work, there’s a bus to take you there. If you don’t know what bus to catch, call 0871 200 22 33 or visit www.LetsTravelWise.org

For your chance to win, simply answer the question below. Q. Which method of transport gets you to town without having to worry about cost and hassle of parking when you get there?

A. The bus
B. The car

To be in with a chance of winning, simply fill your details in the form below and we'll pick a winner at random

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Thank you for your interest, but this competition closed to further entries on October 14th 2008.

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