06/19/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/19/2017 16:56
Based on feedback from pre-public hearing community meetings and social media, DART has compiled the following list of frequently asked questions with answers.
Why is DART considering to change its fare structure?
All of DART's revenue sources, including sales tax and passenger revenue, must grow to financially support the maintenance and expansion of the DART System. The agency's 20-Year Financial Plan assumes an increase to the average fare about every five years.
The DART Board is expected to vote on a new fare structure by August 2017. If approved, most of the fare increases would take effect the following year.
Why eliminate the 7-Day Pass?
DART is proposing to eliminate the weekly pass and introduce fare capping in August 2018. With fare capping, each time a customer purchases a transit pass, the fare would go towards the monthly pass rate. Once a 'pay-as-you-go' customer reaches the $96 monthly pass rate in one calendar month, the system will credit a monthly pass to the person's GoPass app or GoPass Tap card account and they would not have to pay for another transit pass the remainder of that month.
What is fare capping? How would I be able to access this feature?
Fare capping will ensure that riders never overpay for daily or monthly passes. For example, once a person purchases both an A.M. Pass and a P.M. Pass in the same day, the system won't charge another fare to the GoPass app or GoPass Tap account for the remainder of the day.
Similarly, once a customer purchases 32 half-day passes within a calendar month, the system will credit a monthly pass to the person's GoPass app or GoPass Tap card account.
Fare capping will be available with the new GoPass app in May 2018 and the new GoPass Tap card in September 2018.
What enhancements are being made to the GoPass app?
DART launched GoPass in September 2013. In its current form, GoPass makes purchasing transit and admission passes easy, but customers must have a credit or debit card to do so.
Now, the agency is upgrading the app to include a mobile wallet. Customers will be able to add money to a transit account, which they can use to pay for their DART passes. DART riders will be able to pay with cash at more than 900 retail partners to add money to their account. Customers also can keep a credit or debit card on file.
What is the GoPass Tap card?
GoPass Tap is a reloadable payment card for transit that should be available in September 2018.
As with GoPass, customers will be able to put money on an account with cash or a credit or debit card to purchase passes whenever needed. The tap cards will be reloadable and registrable, so if the card is lost, one's money is protected.
DART is installing electronic validators on buses and at rail platforms. Riders will simply tap their GoPass Tap Card, a contactless credit/debit card, or use Apple Pay, Android Pay or Samsung Pay at the reader. The system will debit the exact fare. On the trains, fare enforcement officers will have hand-held devices to verify that customers did tap before boarding.
Do you have to create an account once the Tap Card system starts?
Although the contactless payment card will not require customers to create an account, it is to their benefit to do so. If, for example, the customer loses their card and has not created an account, they will not be able to recover the account balance.
If you use the GoPass Tap Card, will the ticket reader automatically pick the correct ticket type?
On GoPass, the stored value on the customer's account can be used to purchase tickets. The customer will decide the ticket type. On GoPassTap, when the card is tapped to the validator the system will determine 'best fare.'
For example, if a customer boards the bus at 9 a.m., the system will charge them $2.50 (single ride). If that customer boards another bus at 9:30 a.m., when they tap the validator, the system will charge them another 50¢ (equal to an A.M. Pass). If the customer boards another bus at 10 a.m., the system will not charge them as they will now have the equivalent of an A.M. Pass.
Are there any other new pass options?
Yes. DART proposes to eliminate the Two-Hour Pass and the Day Pass, and introduce an A.M. Pass, P.M. Pass, and Single Ride Pass. Passes purchased or activated prior to noon will be known as an A.M. Pass and will be valid for unlimited trips on all modes from the start of service until noon. Passes purchased or activated after 12 p.m. - a P.M. Pass - would be good from noon until midnight. Together, the two would cost the same as a Day Pass, but benefit those who may leave in the afternoon and return home the next morning. The Single Ride Pass allows passengers to make one trip via the bus.
Why eliminate the Day Pass?
As noted above, the Day Pass is being replaced with a combination of an A.M. Pass and P.M. Pass - at the current price of a Day Pass. The combination of an A.M. and P.M. pass can be purchased in one transaction.
While we acknowledge that this represents two tickets where before we had one, we believe this will be offset by the added convenience of having a pass that is good for up to 12 hours rather than two hours. Also, this will reduce the abuse of the current paper day pass.
Will there be any changes to the Midday Pass?
The option of buying a Midday Pass, which allows unlimited travel between 9:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, will remain, although the fare may change after August 2018.
If approved, when will the A.M./P.M. Passes be available?
DART intends to roll out the new A.M./P.M. Passes this November and eliminate the Two-Hour and Day Passes at that time.
What is the benefit of an A.M./P.M Pass?
With the A.M./P.M. Passes, customers will only pay for what they need. For example, some customers are purchasing Day Passes because a Two-Hour Pass doesn't last long enough, but the Day Pass is more than they need, so they are essentially paying too much. The A.M./P.M. Pass would eliminate that problem.
Is the high school reduced fare still limited to Monday-Friday?
No. DART understands that high school students must travel not only to school during the week, but also to extracurricular activities, some of which may occur on the weekend. Therefore, DART is proposing the high school reduced fare be available Monday through Sunday starting August 2018.
Are reduced fares still available to college and trade school students?
Reduced fares would still be available to college students, but will not be available to trade school students.
Will senior citizens still have access to reduced fares?
Yes. Seniors 65 and older are eligible for a reduced fare, but they must take a new DART photo ID. To obtain a DART photo ID, seniors will need to go to the DART Store at Akard Station in Downtown Dallas. Be prepared to show a government-issued ID to purchase the $2 photo ID.
Will DART still have the fare boxes after 2019 for single ride payments?
Yes. DART will continue to have fare boxes on its buses to accept cash fares.
Why is the increase 20 percent?
Fare modifications are necessary to maintain current service levels and allow the capacity needed to meet the area's growing transit needs.
Where can I go for more information?
Additional details on the fare restructure schedule are available at DART.org/FareRestructure.
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