5-Year Fare Policy and 10-Year Fare Collection Outlook
The TTC and York Region Transit (YRT) are working together to develop a 5-Year Fare Policy and 10-Year Fare Collection Outlook. This is an important project that will work to improve the overall customer experience and create a simple and consistent fare system, for both the TTC and YRT.
Since 2020, we have been completing comprehensive research and analysis, consulting with customers and the public. Our next project report will be brought to the February TTC Board meeting, with the final recommendation report in May 2022. For more details on the project and progress to date, see below.
We want to hear from you!
The Virtual Town Hall event has now closed. Thank you to everyone who attended. Your feedback will be considered as we develop our final recommendations for a report to the TTC Board in May 2022.
View a copy of the presentation here.
If you have any questions about the Virtual Town Hall event or the project in general, please contact TTCFares@ttc.ca.
5-Year Fare Policy
The key objective is to develop a complete fare policy that considers all fare options from zero-fare to full-cost recovery. The work will identify policy goals such as equity, affordability, revenue and ridership. It will also identify limits and opportunities in the current fare structure that affect fare policy decision making.
10-Year Fare Collection Outlook
The key objective is to develop a fare collection outlook over a 10-year period that will achieve policy goals and objectives established in the 5-Year Fare Policy. The creation of the 10-Year Fare Collection Outlook will follow the direction provided by the 5-Year Fare Policy.
5-Year Fare Policy
In May 2021, the TTC Board approved seven fare policy goals that help define the TTC’s vision and provide a foundation for addressing customer experience and future fare policy decision making. Since then, we have been working on analyzing various fare options which include distance and zonal options, as well as several options ranging from free fares to full cost recovery described in the table below. A ridership and revenue modelling analysis of the options was also conducted to help support data driven policy recommendations, while also maximizing customer benefits.
This option represents no change from the existing flat fare structure and the 2-hour transfer policy.
Customers are given free travel on all services
Full Cost Recovery
Customers pay a fare that reflects full operational cost (existing fare would increase)
Remove cross boundary double fare between TTC and YRT
Customers would not need to pay a second fare if they transfer between YRT and TTC services. Only the fare for the first service used would be charged.
Cost to ride transit would have a maximum within a certain period (e.g., day, week or month). Trips taken after the maximum fare is reached during the time period would be free.
In this option, the cost to ride transit would change depending on the time of day. Rush hour on regular week days would have a cost, and other times (e.g. at night and on weekends) would have a lower cost. This option would encourage people to use transit during times when it is less busy.
Review of pricing and eligibility of all concession groups
Customers could earn free transit trips by using transit frequently.
Group travel discount
Cost to ride transit would be reduced for larger groups of people (e.g. school classes, tour groups, etc.)
Public and stakeholder consultations on these fare options was also conducted in Spring 2021 to understand how to best add value to our customers. The key findings from this engagement are listed below:
- The current flat fare and free 2-hour transfer across subway, buses and streetcars are equitable and inclusive of all customers
- Customers appreciate the existing age based concessions and Fair Pass discount and they should be retained as part of TTC’s fare structure
- More customers should be eligible for fare discounts for equity reasons
- Removing the double fare between transit agencies makes cross boundary travel more affordable
- Any additional improvements made to the fare structure require equity and access to continue to be foundational
In early 2022, project team published the February 2022 Board report which resulted in the following being recommended:
- Continue to support the TTC’s existing fare structure, which includes the flat fare, free two-hour transfer across all modes and the Fair Pass and age-based discounts as the hallmarks of the TTC’s fare policy;
- Refer recommendation 2 back to staff for further due diligence and detailed financial analysis to inform the final fare policy recommendations that will be presented to the Board for approval.
Recommendation 2: Endorse in principle the opportunities related to fare capping and aligning concessions across Fair Pass, Seniors and Youth as detailed in the Comments section of this report to inform the final fare policy recommendations that will be presented to the Board for approval in May 2022; and
- Direct staff to forward a copy of this report to the Ministry of Transportation to restart discussions on reintroducing the Discount Double Fare (DDF), the TTC-GO Transit co-fare to offset Line 3 closures.
10-Year Fare Collection Outlook
In May 2021, the TTC Board was updated on the insights of peer reviews where we interviewed our peer agencies on their fare collection implementation, innovations and governance.
The TTC then issued a Request for Information (RFI) where we asked vendors for their insights on the fare collection technology landscape and future innovations. 21 vendors responded to our RFI including Metrolinx/PRESTO.
The recommendations listed below are from our consultant, based on their analysis of both the Peer Reviews and RFI Responses. A full detailed analysis can be found in the May 2021 Board Report.
- Establish regional agreements and a governance structure before soliciting a fare collection system
- Let policy lead technology by defining and simplifying fare policy before selecting a technology solution
- Establish a diverse cross-section of stakeholders to develop strong requirements
- Consider a phased implementation when transitioning to a new fare collection solution
- Deploy an open architecture solution to enable integration of best-in-class vendors and future innovations
- Implement a customer focused solution that enables self-service and modern conveniences.
- Currently, technology and operations options are in the process of being evaluated and shared with the Board. These will outline the needs of our future system to ensure that it will be right for the TTC and our customers as fare collection matures and modernizes. Implementation planning will follow, grounded in these options and fare policy outcomes.
The following fare collection modernization initiatives below were recommended by the TTC Board and outlined in the February 2022 Board Report
- Endorse in principle the technology and operations fare collection options, including Open Payments and account-based architecture detailed in the Comments section of this report to develop and inform the implementation plan that will be presented to the Board for approval in May 2022; and
- Authorize a sole source contract with Scheidt & Bachmann Gmbh for the purchase and installation of the required hardware to enable Open Payments on the fare gates to an upset limit of $4.3 million, inclusive of applicable taxes.
The project team plans to provide a project update to the TTC Board in February 2022 and deliver a final recommendation report in May 2022.
If you have any feedback or questions or feedback on the project, please contact TTCFares@ttc.ca.