All-door boarding on the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s (Muni) buses and historic streetcars will go into effect next week.
Muni customers with valid proof of payment will be able to board at any door. All-door boarding is expected to reduce travel times, increase reliability and potentially provide more space for customers throughout the vehicle, making the ride more comfortable. It will also leave more room at the front for those customers who are paying with cash and those with valid proof of payment who need to use the wheelchair lift or the bus kneeling feature.
Muni will be the first transit system in the nation to offer all-door boarding on all buses and rail vehicles.
Currently Muni customers are required to board through the front door of any Muni bus or historic streetcar. All-door boarding has been the policy for several years on Muni’s Metro light rail lines; it will now be expanded to Muni buses and historic streetcars.
Rear-door boarding will be reserved for customers with valid proof of payment. Customers paying with cash, tokens or youth tickets must board through the front door of buses and streetcars and the front door of the first car on Muni Metro trains at street level stops. Customers with valid Proof of Payment who require the use of wheelchair lifts or the bus kneeling feature should also continue to use the front door.
On average, more than 65 customers board Muni buses per hour, which along with New York City is the highest in the country, according to Muni. Heavy passenger volume at many of Muni stops increases the time spent at stops. All-door boarding is expected to reduce this time. Even small savings at each stop can increase the over-all time savings over an entire route, helping Muni stay on schedule and giving customers a faster trip.
In addition to reduced travel times and increased reliability, all-door boarding will clarify Muni’s boarding policy. Although Muni has prohibited rear-door boarding on buses and streetcars in the past, customers have been unofficially boarding through rear doors for many years.