The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) extended its half-price transit pass discount program from July to December 2022 to provide additional economic relief for Metro transit customers.
Metro’s regular 1-Day, 7-Day, and 30-Day passes have been discounted 50% since January 2022 in the agency’s efforts to help its riders, many of whom are essential workers and disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 related economic losses. These special discount passes will remain in effect until December 31. With the discounts, a Metro Day Pass will cost $3.50 instead of $7, a Weekly Pass will be $12.50 instead of $25, and a 30-Day Pass will be $50 instead of $100. Customers can also pay for one-way, individual fares, but these fares will not be offered at the half-price discounted rate.
Metro decided to adjust permanent full-fare pass prices to promote affordability and incentivize customers to purchase unlimited-use passes. Staff will use the information gathered during the promotional period to develop recommendations for pricing options for future full-price passes that include break-even points that are more in line with industry standards and are financially sustainable for current and future Metro transit operations.
Metro’s half-price passes have the added benefit of encouraging customers to use their TAP card as their fare payment in lieu of cash. Customers that pay with TAP cards also benefit from free Metro transfers, access to discounted fares, and balance protection.
Since Metro launched its half-price pass promotion last January, the passes have become increasingly popular. Nearly 50% of Metro riders using TAP are now choosing to buy passes, compared to just 25% purchasing passes back in 2019 prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We remain focused on our goal to make Metro the first choice for transportation in and around Los Angeles, which means we need to keep it accessible and remove barriers to entry, while taking steps to better understand the needs of our customers,” said Metro CEO Stephanie N. Wiggins. “The extension of the discount pass program allows us to continue to grow our ridership by offering equitable access, while also supporting development of our strategies to deliver public transit services that exceed our customers’ expectations.”