WMATA’s Metrobus customers can now see how full a bus is before it arrives, empowering them with more information to decide when and how to travel. Customers can find this real-time information when tracking their bus at buseta.wmata.com, and in the agency’s open data feed for third-party transit and mapping applications like Google Maps.
Metrobus data is made possible by technology aboard every bus that senses when customers enter and exit. Metrorail doors are not equipped with the same sensors, but rail crowding predictions are also available based on recent crowding data.
“Metro is doing our part to help Metro customers feel safe when traveling, and we’re proud to release this new tool to help customers make more informed travel decisions,” said Metro GM/CEO Paul J. Wiedefeld. “Social distancing is a top concern as we all navigate this public health crisis, and we hope customers find this information valuable when deciding when to ride.”
When accessing the data, customers will see a bus or train’s capacity in one of the following categories:
Many seats available
Bus less than 25% occupied
Railcar less than 20% occupied
Few seats available
Bus 25-49% occupied
Railcar 20%-32% occupied
Bus is occupied 50% or greater
Railcar is occupied 33% or greater
The categories are based on public health recommendations for social distancing and will be adjusted based on the latest recommendations. Social distancing may not be possible on every train and bus.