Metro last week approved a new fare policy that simplifies and streamlines Metro fares and caps fares so that no customer overpays for riding Metro buses and trains. The new fare policy was developed to provide a better customer experience by making the transit system easy to use, affordable and equitable for all Metro customers.
The new fare policy, which is expected to go into effect by the summer of 2023, will benefit Metro customers by capping how much they will need to pay each day and week to ride buses and trains, eliminating the need for paying up-front for multi-day passes.
The Board also approved the staff recommendation to extend the sale of 7-Day and 30-Day passes at a 50 percent discount until June 30, 2023, or until fare capping is launched, so that customers do not see an increase in cost. The pass discount was slated to expire on December 31, 2022.
HOW FARE CAPPING WORKS
Under the new fare policy, Metro customers using a TAP card will pay as they go and will never pay more than $5 each day or $18 each week for unlimited rides – which is less than the regular price of Metro’s regular 7-Day and 30-Day passes.
Once customers reach the daily or weekly fare cap, they will not have to pay additional fares. The new policy will make 1-Day, 7-Day and 30-Day passes unnecessary, so they will be eliminated, making the fare structure less complicated for customers to use and for Metro to administer.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
•Metro fare for buses and trains remains at $1.75 (which includes a transfer for two hours and one direction between Metro buses and trains).
Students in grades K-12 will see their base fare drop from $1 to 75 cents and college and vocational students will see their base fare drop from $1.75 to 75 cents to match the fare discount offered to seniors and disabled persons. Student fares will be capped at $2.50/day and $6 a week.
The base fare for seniors and customers with disabilities will remain at 75 cents during peak hours and 35 cents during off-peak hours and the daily cap will be remain at $2.50. Under the new plan, they will now have access to a lower weekly cap at $5.
•The new fare system removes the current additional fare to ride the Silver Line and Express Bus service.
•We’ll be increasing the expiration of TAP cards up to 15 years instead of 10 years.
•Digital TAP cards through the TAP mobile application or Apple Wallet will be free of charge.
•Reduced Fare TAP cards will also remain free•
•Those enrolled in the LIFE and GoPass programs will not be affected by the new fare structure.
Here’s our new fare chart that shows our current fares and the new fares approved by the Board last week:
Over the past few years, Metro has prioritized making transit more affordable and accessible for L.A. County residents. In late 2021, the Metro Board approved the creation of the GoPass pilot program, which gives free transit passes to K-12 and community college students in L.A. County. To date, more than 10 million free rides have been delivered to students using GoPass.
Metro also launched a revamped Low-Income Fare is Easy (LIFE) program in late 2021, which offers 20 free rides a month and deeply discounted fares to low-income riders on Metro and 13 local transit providers. To date, more than 187,000 L.A. County residents have signed up for the LIFE program, and in 2022 Metro has delivered more than 9.4 million discounted rides under the program.
In October, Metro released an initial fare capping proposal to make paying fares to ride Metro simpler and more affordable for public comment at a hearing on Nov. 14. The Board-approved Fare Policy reflects the feedback Metro received from customers and community members at the November hearing as well as mail, email and other stakeholder outreach.
“Our Board action today exemplifies our goal to make it as easy as possible for our transit customers to ride Metro,” said Glendale City Council Member and Metro Board Chair Ara J. Najarian. “The new fare structure and policy will surely help our current customers as well as attract new daily customers to our transit system.”
“The cost of transportation should never stand between Angelenos and opportunity,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “If we’re going to change the car culture here in Los Angeles, we need to break down every barrier to riding Metro — and this new fare policy will make our systems more affordable, accessible, and appealing for every Angeleno.”
“Our new fare capping policy will save our customers money and ensure that no one overpays,” said Metro CEO Stephanie Wiggins. “Fare capping is one of a suite of programs we’ve instituted to lower transportation costs for Angelenos and make our system more accessible and equitable for everyone.”