Free Fare Program for Legally Blind Riders

Beginning November 1, 2019, customers who are legally blind may ride the Santa Cruz METRO fixed-route bus system for free.  To learn more about the program, download the program overview guide at the link below.  To read our full policy on all Discount Fare Options for elderly and disabled passengers, download the full policy from the link below.  This program will allow qualifying customers to travel anywhere METRO's fixed-route buses travel, including on the Highway 17 Express.

 

Why is the program only available for Legally Blind Riders?

The program was proposed as a way to resolve some concerns raised by visually impaired riders who had difficulty using our ticket vending machines (TVMs).  The concern related to the TVMs is specifically tied to the audio component that reads aloud the verbiage on the screen during the transaction.  This issue only affects visually impaired riders who rely on the audio to purchase a ticket. 

 

How do I find out if I qualify?

To qualify, you may download the overview guide at the link below.  On the back page you will find a form that can be signed off by your medical provider, or by a member of Santa Cruz METRO staff.  If you would like to be evaluated by Santa Cruz METRO staff, please contact Customer Service at (831) 425-8600 and ask to make an appointment with the Eligibility Coordinator to be verified for the Free Fare Program.

 

How do I ride for free?

Bus Operators have been instructed to allow customers who are legally blind onboard the bus for free.  If a bus operator is uncertain about whether a customer qualifies for the program, the bus operator may ask to see a copy of the customer's ACCESS Card.  If the customer does not have one, they will be directed to contact Customer Service to get the proper documentation.

 

Do I have to renew my card?

No.  The ACCESS Card is good for the life of the program.

 

View the Free Fare Program Overview here

View the Full Policy here