The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (Muni) is now offering a Lifeline for low-income passengers with a discounted monthly pass. This special ID card solution makes it easier and more affordable to transverse the city-by-the-Bay via mass transit.
Qualified residents can get the Lifeline ID card and monthly pass for $34, which is a 50% reduction over the regular monthly rate. These custom ID cards are good for use on buses above ground as well as the wildly popular Muni Metro system.
The solution, provided by Capture Technologies, provides Muni with a photo ID card which will be issued to San Francisco residents who qualify for the reduced cost card based on residency and income qualifications. Combined with a monthly sticker, the Lifeline Pass is valid until the third day of the following month.
Replacement cards, printer supplies, technical support, and ongoing customer support are key components of the service provided by Capture Technologies. The Lifeline ID card system is designed to be a separate entity from the widely-used Clipper Card system.
Clipper is the transit fare payment system used in the Bay Area since 2006 and now has 1.4 million cards in use. As transit demand increases so does the strain on ID card solutions as Clipper card looks to keep pace and expand into the future.
Muni is ahead of regional transit rivals in providing solutions to low-income passengers as evidenced by the challenges faced in Los Angeles. Facing another year of budgetary issues amid skyrocketing ridership, Los Angeles Metro is increasing their monthly pass, from $75 to $100.
Meanwhile Seattle is following the lead of San Francisco by reducing fares for low income passengers. Despite taking a planned $7-9 million dollar hit they’ll be offering a reduced ride at $1.50, hoping to attract an additional 1% ridership over their 2013 total of 119 million rides.
Another key piece in Muni’s Lifeline pass is the introduction of free transit for most disabled and elderly passengers. Contingent on acquiring a clipper ID card, disabled passengers and low-to-moderate income seniors will be able to ride for free, as opposed to the current fee of $23 a month.