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Fare capping is a way for frequent passengers to save money on transit without the need to pay up front for a bus pass. This ensures that all users can take advantage of fare capping regardless of income. Fare capping also removes the commitment of buying a bus pass up front, allowing for flexibility for our riders.
Fare capping is automatically applied after a rider has spent a certain amount in a given day or calendar month. There is no need to sign up, and no need to purchase a special pass -- just load value onto your DiriGo smartcard or app and ride normally.
Fare capping only works with a DiriGo smartcard or the Umo Mobility app. More information can be found here.
Fare capping saves money by providing free rides after a rider has paid a certain amount in fares in a given day or calendar month. Typically, fare capping activates after the third ride in a given day or 20th ride in a given calendar month.
For full-fare passengers riding local trips, fares are capped at $6 per day and $60 per month. Those qualifying for reduced fares also have reduced fare caps, meaning a reduced-fare rider will pay no more than $3 per day or $30 per month for local trips. For passengers using the BREEZ express route, fare caps (like single-ride fares) are doubled, at $12 per day and $120 per month for full-fare riders.
While bus passes work great for many people, there are several disadvantages compared to fare capping. Bus passes require an up-front payment, which some people are unable to afford. This up-front payment is also a commitment; some riders may not know what their ridership habits will be like, so a pass wouldn't make sense to those riders. Fare capping allows riders the flexibility to choose the mode that's right for them, and if they choose METRO often enough, they'll save the same amount of money as they would have if they'd bought a pass.
Fare capping applies to the whole DiriGo system, which includes METRO, South Portland Bus Service, and Biddeford Saco Old Orchard Beach Transit (BSOOB). Fares paid on any of these services apply to your daily or monthly fare cap. Note that the BSOOB Route 70 (also known as the Purple Line or ZOOM Express) has a higher fare, and higher fare cap, than the METRO BREEZ.
Fare Capping Video -- LINK
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The best way to pay for your ride is to use a DiriGo Smartcard or the Umo Mobility App. Smartcards can be purchased at the METRO PULSE offices at 21 Elm Street in Portland, during business hours. Value can be added to this card for repeated use. The Umo Mobility app is available in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
To pay, make sure there is enough value on your card or app. If using a card, simply tap the DiriGo fare tablet when entering a bus. If successful, you'll hear a cheerful noise and the display will read "PAID". If using the app, scroll to the wallet tab, where you'll find a QR code. Hold your phone a few inches away from the camera on the DiriGo tablet so that the QR code is visible on the screen. You'll hear a cheerful noise when you've successfully paid.
Paying with the DiriGo card or app allows you to transfer between any METRO, South Portland Bus Service, or Biddeford Saco Old Orchard Beach Transit (BSOOB) service within 90 minutes (you may need to pay the net fare difference if transferring to an express route). Using the app or card also unlocks fare capping, which is discussed here.
To pay with cash, deposit exact fare into the fare box (in any combination of bills and coins). Drivers cannot make change.
Fares: $2 for local service, $4 for BREEZ express service. Some passengers may qualify for reduced fares.
Contact an administrator at your school as they are handling the Metro pass program individually.
The DiriGo Umo Mobility App and DiriGo TouchPass Card is valid for 90 minutes whether you take one bus or more to get to your destination. Simply tap your card or scan your phone normally; you should be cleared to board with a transfer.
Note that for transfers to a higher fare route, like the BREEZ, the net cost will apply. For example, if you pay for a $2 local trip and transfer to the BREEZ, you'll be charged the net difference in cost of $2 additional.
Cash riders will need to pay a fare each time they board a bus.
Paper transfers are no longer available.