2-hour Toronto transit transfer for Presto users next month

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Toronto transit users using the Presto card can save on their second fare once the TTC’s new two-hour time-based transfer system takes effect across the network on August 26.

This will cover buses, subways and streetcars. Presto card users will automatically get a two-hour transfer when they tap their Presto card.

Customers who want to transfer within that time frame won’t be charged after tapping their card to board another vehicle.

This move will go a long way to make riding the TTC more affordable to a larger section of the riding population.

Unfortunately, riders paying with cash, tokens or tickets will continue to receive transfers valid for travel in one direction only.

The TTC’s board approved the two-hour transfer policy in November. According to a report to the board at that time, implementing the measure would add an estimated 5,000,000 customer trips per year.

The report estimated that if the plan were implemented in August, it would cost the TTC $11.1 million this year, with an annual cost of $20.9 million after that.

TTC has been losing ridership over the years and that has been a troubling trend. Data from January and February 2017 show Toronto’s public transit system proved there was a problem.

According to the TTC, the agency carried a combined 80.6 million passengers in January and February, which is 700,000 fewer than the same period last year, and 1.7 million below what the TTC budgeted for those months this year.

All transit systems across North America have been experiencing a dip in ridership numbers and there are many reasons for it. One is that Uber and other rideshare companies have made it cheaper for four people sharing a ride in the same direction. In many instances, it is quicker to use Uber rather than public transit and the cost is often not significantly higher. The two-hour window this new transfer offers Presto riders will be an incentive to use public transit. -CINEWS

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