SEPTA is proposing free child fares and a longer time-frame for using the new free transfer under a revised Fare Restructuring Plan that will be considered for approval by the SEPTA Board next week.
The SEPTA Board Budget, Planning and Information Technology Committee recommended the plan at its meeting today, and the proposal will now go to the full Board for a vote at its June 25 meeting. If approved, the changes would go into effect on July 1.
“Equity is a top priority of the Fare Restructuring Plan, and these changes will help us better meet the needs of our low-income communities and traveling families,” said SEPTA General Manager Leslie S. Richards. “It will also help put us in position to adapt to the changing needs of our customers as the region works to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
SEPTA carefully considered feedback from riders in making these revisions, as well as recommendations from the Independent Hearing Examiner who presided in public hearings in May.
Under the revised plan, children under the age of 12 traveling with a fare-paying adult would be able to ride for free. The free child fares would be available on all SEPTA modes, including buses, trolleys, the Market-Frankford Line, the Broad Street Line, the Norristown High Speed Line and Regional Rail. Previously, SEPTA proposed lowering the child fare to $1 for children ages 5 through 11.
Free transfers are another major component of the plan. Under the proposal, customers who use Travel Wallet on SEPTA Key would be able to get one free transfer per trip — a savings of $1. Under the revised proposal, customers will have up to two hours to use their free transfer, providing added convenience and flexibility. Under the previous proposal and current SEPTA policy, transfers must be made within 90 minutes of the first trip.
Upon Board approval of the revised Fare Restructuring Plan, SEPTA will also advance development of new three-day passes with expected rollout in the fall, providing new options for workers and other customers who ride SEPTA less than five days a week. This will include a Three-Day Convenience Pass for Transit that is valid for 72 hours after the initial tap and a new three-day individual Independence Pass valid for travel on Regional Rail and Transit.
As was announced last month, SEPTA will defer all proposed increases under the Fare Restructuring Plan until at least January 2021.
For more information, visit www.septa.org.