We’ve finalized our proposal to make paying fares easier and to ensure that no one overpays for riding Metro buses and trains. Based on customer feedback, the staff recommendation is to keep base fares at their current prices and continue free one-way transfers between Metro buses and trains for two hours, among other changes.
Quick background: in October, Metro released a fare capping proposal that would change our fares to make them more simple and affordable for our most frequent riders. We then held a public hearing on Monday, November 14, to gather feedback from our customers.
We take the public comment process seriously and have modified the fare restructuring as part of the formal recommendation. The Metro Board of Directors will consider the staff recommendation at their meeting on Dec. 1 at 10 a.m. You can listen/watch the meeting online here. You can comment at the meeting — the instructions are on page 4 of the agenda.
Other key info you should know about the staff recommendation:
•The modified approach still introduces daily and weekly fare capping in which no one will pay more than $5 a day or $18 a week for unlimited rides. That’s lower than the $6 a day and $20 a week in the original proposal.
•With fare capping, riders would no longer have to purchase daily, weekly or 30-day Metro passes in advance. You pay as you go with Stored Value on TAP cards — and when you reach the fare cap then you pay no more.
•The staff recommendation keeps the base fare the same for senior and disabled riders and the off-peak fare is being eliminated so you can ride any time for the same price. Also, the base fare is lower for student and college/vocational riders.
•Our LIFE riders will receive 20 free rides per month (with free transfers within two hours) under the staff recommendation and then pay per ride until they reach the daily or weekly cap. LIFE riders will only pay for rides they take.
•The staff recommendation is to eliminate charging extra fare for the J (Silver) Line and express buses. Fares for the J Line and express buses would be the same as for all Metro buses and trains.
•The staff recommendation also includes extending the 50 percent discounts to our regular daily, 7-day and 30-day passes until fare capping is implemented — which would happen next summer if the Board approves the proposal.
•A friendly reminder: to take advantage of fare capping you need to pay fares with a TAP card. We encourage all our cash paying riders to get a TAP card — the savings for many of you will be significant.
The chart shows our current fares in the left column, the original fare proposal in the center column and the revised proposal in the right column.
We know that any proposal to change fares can be tough on riders — many of whom rely deeply on Metro to get around. We think these changes will make riding Metro more affordable and easier in the long-term and will also help sustain our services.
We’re very grateful to those of you who took the time to review our proposal and comment on it. If you would like more information on the proposal and the changes that have been made, please see our staff report.