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[Ontario / GTA] Beginning Jan 7, 2018, GO Transit users to get half-price fares on TTC & v.v. -- save $1.50 each trip

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 7th, 2018 1:54 pm
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[Ontario / GTA] Beginning Jan 7, 2018, GO Transit users to get half-price fares on TTC & v.v. -- save $1.50 each trip

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/transp ... n-ttc.html

Commuters who transfer between GO Transit and the TTC are about to get a $1.50 break on their fares, the Star has learned.

The provincial government has agreed to subsidize a co-fare agreement that will allow riders who use both agencies on a single trip to avoid paying two full-price fares.

Instead, adult passengers on GO Transit and the Union Pearson Express who transfer to the TTC will pay a half price TTC fare of $1.50.

Going the other way, riders switching from the TTC to GO Transit or the Union Pearson Express will be discounted $1.50 on their fares.

The discount will apply only to riders who pay using the Presto fare card.

A regular adult TTC ride using Presto costs $3. Fares on GO Transit and the Union Pearson Express vary depending on the distance travelled.

Premier Kathleen Wynne, Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca, and Toronto Mayor John Tory plan to announce the fare reduction on Friday morning.

Del Duca told the Star on Tuesday night that the change is “fantastic news for the tens of thousands of people across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area that transfer ... for their daily commutes.”

“These commuters will now not only enjoy enhanced service across the GO network, but also a substantial savings for choosing to take transit to get around the GTHA,” the minister said.

Subsidizing the discount will cost the provincial treasury $18 million a year, and will affect 50,000 daily commuters who take the TTC and GO Transit or the UP Express.

For average commuters, it could mean a savings of $720 a year.

The change will be put in place to coincide with the opening of the Spadina subway extension to Vaughan, which will be the first TTC subway to cross municipal boundaries and will intersect with GO Transit service.

The extension is scheduled to open on December 17, and once it’s in operation more GO Transit users are expected to be hopping aboard the TTC as part of their daily commute.

The subsidy is consistent with Wynne’s plan to reduce gridlock by encouraging motorists to take public transit. At the same time, with an election set for June 7, 2018, it should be politically helpful to the governing Liberals, who hold most of the seats in the Greater Toronto Area.

Contacted about the arrangement, a spokesperson for Mayor John Tory said it’s “a step in the right direction” toward the SmartTrack project. Tory promised during the election campaign that under his SmartTrack plan, transit riders would be able to board at GO stations within Toronto at the same price as taking the TTC.

“This is the first step in fare integration, not the only step and not the end of the story, but a great beginning,” wrote Don Peat in an email.

“The TTC's budget is protected and will not be negatively impacted. Ultimately, this agreement will mean if you ride a mix of the TTC, UP Express and GO to get around Toronto, transit will now be less expensive."

Spokespeople for the TTC and Metrolinx, the provincial agency that operates GO Transit, declined to comment.

GO Transit already has co-fare agreements with all other local transit agencies in the 905, but until this week’s announcement it lacked one with the TTC, which is by far the biggest transit operator in the region.

Forcing riders who use both TTC and GO Transit to pay a double fare has been seen as a significant disincentive to more people taking public transit.

Metrolinx, which is also responsible for transportation planning in the GTHA, has initiated a study of fare integration, with the ultimate goal of standardizing fare structures of all the agencies in the region and allowing passengers a “seamless” transit trip across municipal boundaries.

A report presented to the agency’s board last month determined a new regionwide fare system would require changes to transit governance and funding models however, which are likely to be controversial and take years to implement.

The report recommended less contentious measures in the short-term as part of a “step-by-step approach” to reduce barriers to transit use across municipal boundaries.

They included creating a co-fare between the TTC and GO Transit, advice that the province appears to have followed.

Other proposed measures were discounts for trips between the TTC and 905 transit agencies, and adjustments to GO’s fare structure.
Last edited by alanbrenton on Oct 4th, 2017 9:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
12 replies
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Apr 26, 2004
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Cool. I don't commute downtown for work, but I always thought it was kind of expensive to take a GO train to Union, and then pay full fare on the TTC to just go 3-4 stops on the subway to Dundas or somewhere like that.
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Aug 29, 2017
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Since this only applies to PRESTO card holders, this is mostly subsidizing PRESTO, not specifically TTC or their riders. Just one more way to make up for the financial PRESTO mess - move the accrued debt on the balance sheet from PRESTO to "Government Loves you subsidies".

Good for all those commuting on GO. Also makes up a bit for the elimination of the tax refund on transit passes.

"This system isn’t coming cheap. The commission is spending $47 million to install it, with the province chipping in many tens of millions more. We don’t even have a reliable figure for the total cost of implementation. It was estimated at between $250 million and $300 million back in 2011, and the agency that owns it, Metrolinx, would not give the Star an updated figure this week.

That alone is cause for concern, especially given Presto’s history. In 2012, Ontario’s auditor general reported that development costs of the system had ballooned from $250 million to more than $700 million. At the time, he said it could turn out to be the most expensive fare-card system in the world."

https://www.thestar.com/opinion/editori ... orial.html
“It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do."― John Ruskin
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TTC pass might go away. Easily forged and flashing one makes it even easier.
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alanbrenton wrote: TTC pass might go away. Easily forged and flashing one makes it even easier.
The standalone metropass is going away once the Presto infrastructure roll-out is complete. Will have to load it on to a Presto card instead.
Jr. Member
Dec 7, 2016
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Anyone else think old Wynnebag is behind this because she's trying to buy votes?

It's great for people who use the TTC and GO trains etc., I dont, but GO trains are expensive to begin with so any break on cost is welcome.
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Oct 4, 2017
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People might take the TTC bus to the GO station instead of driving to the GO station parking lot & taking the GO train.

Its hard to get parking at the GO station anyways, and the traffic there is a nightmare . It takes 10-15 mins to just get out of the GO parking lot during rush hour. Plus lot of break ins & thefts take place in GO parking lots. Your car is not safe from vandalism & break ins and even thefts, the lots are pretty isolated and very little security.
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I wonder if the discount will really start on December 17 (Sunday). Haven't read/heard much about it since the October fanfare.

Edit: Just logged into my presto and noticed this:

Good news PRESTO card users! Starting January 7, when you transfer between TTC and GO Transit or UP Express, you can save up to $1.50 on your fare. Watch for more details soon.
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alanbrenton wrote: I wonder if the discount will really start on December 17 (Sunday). Haven't read/heard much about it since the October fanfare.
Mentioned in recent news release
https://news.ontario.ca/mto/en/2017/12/ ... er-17.html

Ontario and the City of Toronto are cutting costs for commuters in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. Starting on January 7, 2018, adult, senior, youth and student TTC riders will pay a TTC fare of just $1.50 when they use a PRESTO card to transfer to or from GO Transit or the Union Pearson Express.
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tk1000 wrote: Mentioned in recent news release
https://news.ontario.ca/mto/en/2017/12/ ... er-17.html

Ontario and the City of Toronto are cutting costs for commuters in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. Starting on January 7, 2018, adult, senior, youth and student TTC riders will pay a TTC fare of just $1.50 when they use a PRESTO card to transfer to or from GO Transit or the Union Pearson Express.
Yep. i saw it on the presto portal.

You handily skipped the last portion of my post lol.

Thumps up nonetheless.
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Dec 1, 2017
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Really good info here. This subsidy does help. But I'm kinda confused how post sec/senior/student passes that need photo id would work on presto.
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Darkfaders wrote: Really good info here. This subsidy does help.But I'm kinda confused how post sec/senior/student passes that need photo id would work on presto.
The photo id is verified at a Customer Service Outlet. These discounted fare types can only be setup at a Customer Service Outlet, cannot be done online. PRESTO recommends you carry your photo id with you.

from https://www.prestocard.ca/en/about/FAQ/ ... -your-card

How do I set up my PRESTO card to deduct a child, student or senior fare?
Discounted fares/passes are available for children, students and seniors using a PRESTO card on all transit agencies.
Your card must be set up to process a discounted fare at your transit service’s Customer Service Outlet. See the Using PRESTO page for details about discounted fares.


from https://www.prestocard.ca/en/about/using-presto

Set a Child, Student, or Senior Fare Type
You can visit any Customer Service Outlet to set specific fare types to your PRESTO card. See the fare type eligibility for specific fare types that can be added to your PRESTO card. Visit your local transit agency's website for specific fare information. Always carry your proof of eligibility when travelling.
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Started today

Starting this Sunday, January 7, you can save with your PRESTO fare card, when you continue your Metrolinx trip on the TTC — or, in the opposite direction, when you transfer from TTC to GO Transit or UP Express.

(Most readers know that Metrolinx is the parent company of GO and UPX.)

The double-fare discount is available only for PRESTO users who pay as they go with their cards. It’s not available if you use cash, paper tickets, tokens, a Metropass or a monthly pass on your PRESTO card. Adult, post-secondary student and senior passengers are eligible for this discount.

Adults can save $1.50. Students and seniors can save 55 cents. The PRESTO system applies the discount automatically as you travel. All you have to do is tap your card.


from https://transit.toronto.on.ca/archives/ ... ling.shtml

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