Transit agencies welcome commuters for Dump the Pump Day

June 15, 2011

NEW — 2 p.m. June 15, 2011

Puget Sound public transit agencies encourage commuters to climb aboard Thursday for National Dump the Pump Day.

National Dump the Pump Day is sponsored by the American Public Transportation Association to encourage people to use public transportation systems available in local communities across the nation. The goal is to encourage people to save money, help the environment and increase the nation’s energy independence.

“Puget Sound residents have so many great alternatives to driving — buses, light rail, streetcars, trains, vanpools and ferries. Dump the Pump Day is a great time to try out a new ride and save some money,” Kevin Desmond, King County Metro Transit general manager, said in a news release.

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QFC offers ORCA regional transit cards

May 10, 2011

Transit commuters can now pick up ORCA passes when they get their milk and eggs.

QFC, including the Issaquah-area stores, recently joined the retail locations offering ORCA, or One Regional Card for All.

ORCA is a collaboration among the transit systems in King, Kitsap, Snohomish and Pierce counties.

Commuters use ORCA cards on more than 250,000 trips each weekday and 49 percent of all transit trips in the region. The smart card has replaced about 300 transportation passes, tickets and transfers.

Customers can also order ORCA cards online at www.orcacard.com, by calling 1-888-988-6722 toll free, by visiting a transit agency customer service office or get them at a fare vending machine.

King County Metro Transit fares will rise in January

December 7, 2010

The fare for a King County Metro Transit bus ride rises in January.

The standard fare for adult Metro riders is scheduled for a 25-cent fare increase. Fares for other Metro products, such as passes and ticket books, also increase.

Fares also change for Access customers. The fare increases by 25 cents. The cost for a monthly pass remains at $45. Youth fares remain unchanged.

The fare changes do not impact the 75-cent fares for seniors and other people qualified for reduced fares. The cost for a monthly pass is scheduled to increase.

Starting in January, seniors and other-reduced fare customers must purchase $27 monthly ORCA PugetPasses. The pass is good for travel on transit systems in King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish counties.

Metro Transit plans to stop selling Metro-only annual and monthly-reduced fare passes in 2011, but existing Metro-only annual reduced fare passes remain valid until expiration.

The fare hike is part of a plan to ease the impact of a budget shortfall. Metro Transit has also made other cuts and reduced staff.

Customers can purchase ORCA — or One Regional Card for All — cards and other fare products at Metro sales offices, or by mail, phone or online. Call 888-988-6722 toll free.

County Council cancels planned Metro fee hike for seniors

October 24, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 11, 2010

The planned 25-cent transit fare increase for senior King County Metro Transit riders has been cancelled.

King County Council members adopted legislation Oct. 11 to scuttle the hike. The measure also started the transition from the Metro senior pass to the regional ORCA card.

The decision held the cost of a bus ride for seniors and disabled passengers at 75 cents. The legislation increased the cost of a monthly pass from $18 to $27, but monthly pass can now be used on any transit system in the region.

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Transit agencies extend free ORCA card offer

January 26, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. Jan. 26, 2010

ORCA transit smart cards will be available for free through Feb. 28.

Starting March 1, a standard adult or youth ORCA card will cost $5. The free-card promotion had been scheduled to end Jan. 31.

ORCA — for One Regional Card for All — is a collaboration between Metro Transit and transit systems in King, Kitsap, Snohomish and Pierce counties. The plastic card contains a microprocessor; cards come equipped with a so-called e-purse function to allow riders to preload fares onto the card. Customers can also purchase a pass product, like a monthly PugetPass, and then load it onto the smart card.

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