ALERT! : More info
Translink Buzzer Blog

Questions and answers about the YVR AddFare

A ticket vending machine on the Canada Line.

A ticket vending machine on the Canada Line.

So since many people have questions about the YVR AddFare, our media relations department has put together a Q&A document.

Just so we have a one-stop shop for this info, I’m going to copy and paste that Q&A over here. I’m also going to include the questions from the earlier post on the YVR AddFare. So hopefully this post will answer most things you are wondering!

General questions and answers about the YVR AddFare

  1. Why is the YVR AddFare coming in?

    In 2004, there was a funding gap between the cost of construction and the maximum the various funding partners were able to pay. Several measures were approved to close that gap including charging an additional amount on trips to Vancouver International Airport, as is the practice at many airports around the world. The amount to be charged would be enough to recover an additional $55 million (in 2003 dollars) of construction that would need to be invested and financed by the Contractor.

  2. When does it come into effect?

    Monday, January 18, 2010.

  3. Who gets the money?

    The funds go to TransLink to pay for the costs not funded by the other partners.

  4. Does the money go to the Vancouver International Airport Authority?

    No. YVR contributed $300 million for the portion of the Canada Line from Bridgeport Station to YVR-Airport Station.

  5. Who has to pay the YVR AddFare?

    Anyone boarding the Canada Line at YVR-Airport Station, Sea Island Centre and Templeton Stations, buying their ticket at a Ticket Vending Machine (TVM). This includes concession (seniors and students) fares. The TVMs at the Sea Island stations (YVR-Airport, Sea Island Centre and Templeton) will be adjusted to charge the additional $5 automatically.

  6. Who does not have to pay it?

    People who use pre-paid fare media, such as FareSaver Tickets, monthly FareCards, Vancity U-Passes, BC Government Bus Passes and other such tickets, do not have to pay the Canada Line-YVR AddFare.

  7. I have a pre-paid ticket, but need to buy an AddFare to travel to additional zones. Will I be charged the additional $5?

    No. TVMs charge the regular AddFare prices to upgrade a pre-paid ticket, the same as at other stations. The YVR AddFare is only charged for a new ticket purchased at a TVM at one of the three Sea Island Stations. (The ticket will be marked “Airport” to so fare inspectors can see it.)

  8. Can I buy pre-paid tickets like DayPasses at the airport?

    DayPasses and other pre-paid tickets can be purchased at any FareDealer location, and there are two in the vicinity of the airport: one at the Pharmasave on Level 1 (Domestic Departures) and another at the 7-11 store on Grant McConachie Way; DayPasses will not be sold at TVMs on Sea Island.

  9. Are there exemptions for YVR Employees, Burkeville residents and/or staff and students at BCIT Aerospace?

    Those who have pre-paid fare media are exempt from the Canada Line YVR AddFare, these people may wish to purchase these media if they have not already done so.

  10. If I get on Canada Line at Templeton or Sea Island Centre, how will the TVMs “know” if I’m going towards Richmond or downtown Vancouver, or if I’m going to the airport?

    Since trips between one Sea Island station and another are free of charge, a proof of payment is not necessary on Canada Line unless one is travelling to Bridgeport or beyond. Therefore, the only tickets one needs on Canada Line are those for a trip off Sea Island.

  11. The Commissioner’s order is different from what TransLink was asking for. What will this mean for TransLink’s revenue?

    It’s hard to say at this stage: Canada Line usage by air travellers has been good so far but it will take a few years to fully understand the trend and determine whether the loss of the YVR Addfare on prepaid media will make a very great difference in the long run. The plan is to pay off that portion of the cost in approximately 30 years.

Questions from Buzzer blog commenters

  1. How it will work when travelling on Sundays or holidays with my pass? I am normally allowed to take 1 adult with me. Will they also be exempt from the YVR AddFare on these days still?

    Since a monthly FareCard is exempt, additional travellers for the Sunday group offer would also be exempt.

  2. Will the Concession Month Pass cover the YVR AddFare?

    Yes, the Concession pass covers the Canada Line YVR AddFare.

  3. If I want to go from Waterfront to YVR and back to Waterfront, and I buy my ticket from a TVM at Waterfront, do I need to add $5 on my fare when I get to YVR for the way back?

    If you travel out of YVR before your original ticket expires, you are fine. If not, and you require a cash or credit card purchase for the return ticket from Sea Island, then you have to pay the YVR AddFare.

  4. Will DayPasses purchased on Sea Island station vending machines be subject to the $5 addfare?

    No, the passes are the same cost wherever they are purchased. No YVR AddFare will be applied to passes bought at the airport.

  5. Will prepaid ticket sales be banned at the airport?

    No, we will not be banning prepaid fare sales at the airport.

  6. Are West Coast Express 28-day passes exempt from the YVR AddFare?

    Yes, they are.

  7. Are Olympic tickets and souvenir Olympic passes exempt from the YVR AddFare?

    Yes, they are.

  8. Does this apply to the N10 bus as well, if you’re boarding at the airport and going downtown late at night?

    The YVR AddFare is Canada Line only, and the N10 is not affected.


  • By Ian S., January 8, 2010 @ 4:43 pm

    It seems the term Add Fare is being used for two purposes — the YVR Add Fare and the regular Add Fare for zone upgrades. The TVMs have a prominently labelled slot for the latter purpose, which has nothing to do with the YVR extra fare. It might be better to come up with a completely different name for the YVR fare.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 8, 2010 @ 4:44 pm

    Duly noted, Ian. I’ll pass that along.

  • By wali, January 9, 2010 @ 10:11 am

    I think Q8 of the original Q&A and Q4 from the buzzer blog contradict – are DayPasses sold at those three stations’ TVM? My suggestion is to sell them – but make the AddFare option based on prepaid vs TVM purchase. In other words: prepaid = no AddFare; any TVM on Sea Island = $5 extra.

  • By Mike, January 9, 2010 @ 7:34 pm

    I noticed today that at Templeton Station, on the ticket machines of the inbound platform, to the left of the screen is a list of Skytrain stations and what zone ticket is required. Under the 1 zone fare, all the Sea Island Stations are listed when in fact there is no charge between these stations from Templeton. I assume it’s the same at the other stations on Sea Island, though I didn’t have time to check. I also noticed that there’s no “fare-paid zone” markings on the ground on the outbound platform like there is on the inbound platform, which is good.

  • By Laetitia, January 9, 2010 @ 11:06 pm

    I think YVR portion of the Canada Line should be changed to something like “Airport Line” or “Sea Island Line”.
    It’s just way too confusing for visitors, as the fare system is completely different and the than the other part of the city and also the destination is different.

  • By Cliff, January 10, 2010 @ 4:01 am

    I’ve always thought that, Laetitia.

    The way the Canada Line is run is almost exactly like the other two lines.

    The simple way to do it would simply be to have the Canada Line be the Richmond line and the the trains going to YVR called the Airport Line.

    “Canada line train to: Richmond-Brighouse”

    “Airport line train to: Vancouver International Airport”

    I don’t get why planners did it the way they’re doing it now. Hell, the folks over in marketing would have got a big kick out of this, marketing the Canada Line as two lines and not one!

  • By ;-), January 10, 2010 @ 7:53 pm

    I agree with you about the Richmond & Airport references for clarification.

    However during funding process, one promise for Federal (as well as provincial and municipal) funding was to name it “Canada Line” as it was available to ALL Canadians and not exclusively for Airport traffic and Richmond residents. The previous name was RAV line for Richmond, Airport, and Vancouver.

    If it said Richmond or Airport, it may imply that if you are travelling within Vancouver the service would not allow you to get out midway like Airporter service or the old Granville suburban runs.

  • By ;-), January 10, 2010 @ 8:45 pm

    As mentioned on another thread, one thing that’s driving me nuts is when my bus pulls by a Canada Line station. The stop is announced as a “Skytrain” station and not “Canada Line”.

  • By ben K, January 10, 2010 @ 11:20 pm

    Smileyface: That reasoning, as we all know, is about as watertight as a soaked sponge. After all, witness the chorus of confused riders day after day who board a Skytrain expecting that it will take them either into the past (to Expo) or the future (the next Millennium)… Well, an even better name then would be “Person Line”, since it is a service that is available to all people, not just Canadians (think of all the Olympic tourism!!1!11)

    *rolls eyes*


  • By Peter, January 11, 2010 @ 10:02 am

    I must reiterate: “Does this include West Coast Express commuter passes?”

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 11, 2010 @ 11:41 am

    Peter: I’m still awaiting the official answer on your question. Discussion seems to indicate that WCE passes would be accepted as prepaid fares so far, but I’ll get the official word to you as soon as they pass it along to me.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 11, 2010 @ 11:44 am


    Well, Canada Line is actually considered one line of the SkyTrain system, even though the technology is different. SkyTrain is the regional brand name for our elevated rail rapid transit, and it just gets much more confusing for riders if we insist that one branch is “Canada Line” and the others are something different.

  • By Cliff, January 12, 2010 @ 4:15 am

    The Canada Line managed to save me $20 on Sunday.

    Parking on anywhere on Sea Island other than the terminal is generally prohibited. I scoured the island out of curiosity to see if there was any way to park and take the Canada Line instead of parking. There is a very small area on Miller Road at Templeton where parking is prohibited Monday to Friday 7am-7pm. But not Sunday! I parked my truck there and walked the three blocks over to Templeton Station and took the train in.

    This little trick only works on weekends, mind you. But at $8 an hour to park at the terminal, I’ll take what I can get. The Canada Line is great. Even better now that it’s free from Templeton to YVR!

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 12, 2010 @ 3:03 pm

    Peter: at long last! WCE passes count as prepaid fares.

  • By Reva, January 12, 2010 @ 3:59 pm

    Jhen, do Olympic event tickets count as prepaid fares as they include unlimited transit travel on the day of the event? I think tourists arriving for Olympic events might want to know such a thing. Perhaps temporary signs could be placed on or near CL ticket machines at YVR stating whether or not Oly event ticket holders are required to pay the additional $5.

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 12, 2010 @ 4:02 pm

    Oh yes: they do count as prepaid fares. So do the Olympic souvenir passes. I have also passed along your suggestion about signage!

  • By Peter, January 13, 2010 @ 10:45 pm

    Thank you, Jhenifer. :)

  • By Cow, January 14, 2010 @ 5:49 pm

    One question I didn’t see addressed: does this apply to the N10 as well (if you’re boarding at the airport and going downtown late at night)?

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 15, 2010 @ 10:05 am

    Good one, Cow: here’s the answer. The AddFare is Canada Line only, and the N10 is not affected.

  • By Anne, January 15, 2010 @ 9:30 pm

    Suppose a fare evader gets on the Canada Line at Waterfront without paying any fare, and travels to YVR. If a fare inspector there asks to see his ticket, he can say “oh, I only came one stop, from Sea Island Station”. Isn’t that a loophole in the fare enforcement system?

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano, January 18, 2010 @ 9:26 am

    Anne: I passed your note along to our Transit Police and here’s the answer

    Since travel is free between the Sea Island stations, checking tickets at YVR would not work for identifying fare evaders. General Canada Line ticket checking and fare enforcement takes place in both directions between Waterfront and Templeton. The Canada Line YVR AddFare would be enforced with checks in the inbound direction between Templeton and Bridgeport.

  • By Ric, May 5, 2010 @ 5:07 pm

    Why don’t the trains from Richmond tell people to change trains at Bridgeport for trains to the YVR-Airport when the Richmond-Brighouse trains from Waterfront tell people to change at Bridgeport for trains to YVR-Airport?

  • By Schmer, August 26, 2016 @ 9:28 am

    Regarding question 1 in the blog answers, I’ve been under the impression that with the Compass card there is no longer a plus one grace.

Other Links to this Post

  1. Twitter Trackbacks for The Buzzer blog » Questions and answers about the YVR AddFare [] on — January 8, 2010 @ 4:38 pm

  2. The Buzzer blog » Olympic travel tips: All about transit fares — January 14, 2010 @ 2:32 pm

  3. The Buzzer blog » Canada Line YVR AddFare coming Mon Jan 18: here’s how it works — January 26, 2010 @ 4:44 pm

  4. The Transit Games — February 9, 2010 @ 8:09 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

Please read our Participation Guidelines before you comment.