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Please note...
It may take up to 2 working days for online top-ups to be registered on your card.
Top-up payments made in cash and paid to the driver are instant.

What is TAP?

TAP is our pay-as-you-go smartcard scheme that works like an electronic wallet, perfect for those without a contactless card, or those who want to keep on top of their spending. Simply load money onto your card and tap away, using it like a contactless card.


What is pay-as-you-go?

"Pay-as-you-go" means you can put money (credit) on your TAP card and then use it to buy your tickets on Southdown buses. The credit never expires – it stays there until you use it, so you can save your card for future trips or lend your card to family and friends to use. Once you’ve used up your credit, you can top it up again.


How much does it cost?

The cards are free, however, there is a minimum £5 top-up when applying for your first card. The fares when using TAP are the same as if you were to pay with cash or contactless.


How do you use your TAP card?

Simply ask the bus driver for your ticket as normal but let them know that you’ll be paying with your TAP card. Then, when asked to do so, simply place your card on the reader and the correct amount will be deducted, and your ticket will be printed.


How can I get a TAP card?

Due to a review of our operating costs, we are no longer accepting applications for new TAP cards. As an alternative, we accept all major Visa and Mastercard contactless cards. For children, we also accept prepaid cards such as Hyperjar, Go Henry, Nimbl, Starling, and Revolut. If you already have a TAP card, you can continue using it for now.


How can I top up my TAP card?

You can top up your card on the bus with the driver, online at, over the phone on 01342 719 619, or at our offices (Southdown Buses, Silverwood, Snow Hill, Copthorne, West Sussex, RH10 3EN).


How much can I put on my TAP card?

There is maximum value of £300 on all TAP cards.


How can I find out my remaining balance?

When you buy a ticket on the bus, the ticket will display your remaining balance. You can also ask the driver to check your remaining balance before you buy a ticket.


What happens if I lose my TAP card?

If you lose your card, please ring our offices on 01342 719 619 as soon as possible. We can stop your card to prevent it from being used and transfer your remaining balance onto a new card and send it out to you. There is a £5 replacement fee for any lost cards.


How can I get a refund?

If you no longer need your TAP card, send it in the post to us (Southdown Buses, Silverwood, Snow Hill, Copthorne, West Sussex, RH10 3EN) and we will contact you to arrange your refund.

Smartcard artwork - Tap - Front.jpg
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