Transportation Riders United

DDOT’s Proposed New Fares: An Explainer

DDOT and SMART are proposing a revolution in the ways in which you pay for the bus! What would this mean for you? Here’s what you need to know:

Proposed Fare Changes

  • Eliminate transfer feesInstead of paying $1.50 and adding a charge for a transfer and/or return trip, you’d pay $2 for unlimited rides for 4-hours. Ride all you want –no need to pay again!
  • Same fare on SMART and DDOT – Your $2 base fare would provide unlimited rides anywhere in the region, on any SMART or DDOT bus! (QLINE may even join in too!)
  • No increase for seniors or people with disabilities – The four-hour pass price remains at $0.50 for these reduced-fare users, and students would join this simple reduced-fare group – a price reduction for students!

Longer passes available would be:

A chart showing proposed fare changes.

These passes would be available on a rolling time frame. So if you start your 7 day pass on a Wednesday, it would be good through the following Tuesday. If you start your 31 day pass in the middle of the month, it would be usable through the middle of the next month. No wasted money if you buy your monthly pass on the 10th or 20th of the month.

A young hijabi reading her smartphone on the bus

DDOT is working on an option to buy passes on your smartphone, which you would then show to the driver as proof of payment. That could mean no more carrying around bus cards at all!

Note: These are all still proposals, and wouldn’t be implemented until approved by City Council, tentatively in January 2019.

To see DDOT’s explanation of the fare changes, click here.

TRU is excited that DDOT and SMART have been listening to riders who want more flexibility and less confusion. While some riders may pay a little more due to the base fare increase, many others will pay less thanks to these changes. Less hassle with transfers should mean faster boarding resulting in faster trips for everyone. These simpler fares should also help attract new riders by eliminating one barrier.

How to Share Feedback with DDOT and SMART on Fare Changes

A Black dad and son looking at each other on a bus.

We imagine members of our transit community will have some opinions on these broad changes! 

These fare revisions need to be approved by City Council, so tell Council what you like and don’t like about this proposal.

SMART is expected to schedule public meetings on this in the coming months.