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Translink Buzzer Blog

Compass Card is on its way! Bus fare changes too!

Ready, set, tap!

Come this fall, more TransLink customers will be making the move to the Compass Card!

Joining the 130,000 customers already tapping on the system, riders will continue to see Compass roll out in phases until the fall when everyone will start tapping.

Compass Vending Machines (CVMs) will be activated in August to prepare for the switch over. Working station-by-station,  it will take approximately 8 weeks to get all the machines up and running!

When all CVMs are ready to go, riders will then be able to start buying single-use tickets from CVMs at SkyTrain and SeaBus terminals.

By late October, Compass Cards will be available to the general public to buy for use on all transit services — just in time for monthly pass holders to load November’s month pass on their Compass Card!

After this date, Compass Cards will be available from CVMs, by mail, online, phone request and in person at the Compass retailer network or Compass walk-in centres.

But Compass Card is not the only fare payment change in the works!

Starting October 5th, bus-only trips — no matter the time of the day— will only cost you a one-zone fare. So if you are an adult, your bus fare will cost you $2.75 no matter which bus you are on, the day, the time or number of zones travelled.

This change in bus fare is all in the name of helping our customers adjust to the tapping system. Trips made by bus will now only require one tap at the beginning of travel. In other words, you don’t have to tap off the bus!

This shift will ensure customers only pay for the travel they’ve taken, even if they forget to tap out as they exit the bus.

In case you’re wondering, fares will remain the same for SkyTrain, SeaBus, Canada Line and West Coast Express travel. Tapping requirements for trips made by these services will still require tapping at the beginning and end of travel.

If you think your tapping skills may need some work or if you have  some Compass Card questions, don’t worry we got you covered.

As a part of our Compass public education program, staff will be out at stations later this month to support the switch to CVMs.

Staff will help customers learn how to use the new machines and understand the ins-and-outs of tapping as well as answer your questions and provide support. And don’t forget askcompass.ca!

Who’s ready to get tapping?

 

UPDATE: Hi folks. In an effort to make these changes clearer, here’s the three things you’ll need to know about Compass and bus fares this fall and winter:

1. All buses are one zone fare.

2. If your trip includes rail and/or boat modes of travel (SkyTrain incl. Canada Line), SeaBus, West Coast Express) you will continue to pay for the zones you travel – the same as you do today.

3. While Compass cards continue to be distributed this fall/winter via terminals, having the card sent by mail, and at vendors etc., both the existing fare media (single ticket, transfers, FareCards etc.) and Compass Cards can be used on the entire transit system. Not until all the rail and boat mode stations are at a stage where they can close their gates will the use of non-Compass fare media be phased out.

I hope that makes things clearer. Let us know if it doesn’t. Here’s a link to the press release.

UPDATE: Cathy McLay, CFO & Executive Vice President, Finance and Corporate Services for TransLink, announces the latest updates to Compass Card and bus fares in Metro Vancouver

Author: Laura Tennant


161 Comments

  • By MG, August 6, 2015 @ 12:05 pm

    So if I leave work and get on a bus, stop to pick up something at a store and get back on the bus, I’ll have to pay 2.75 for each trip, whereas if I were to do this with the current rates, I would only have to make one payment of 2.75 if I was back on a bus within the 90 minutes a fare is valid?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 6, 2015 @ 3:21 pm

    Hey MG, as long as you transfer to your next bus within 90 minutes you would only have to pay once.

  • By Corey Burger, August 6, 2015 @ 12:12 pm

    The original plan for Compass had bus-transfers not being accepted on SkyTrain fare gates meaning people paying cash, usually tourists and the lower income brackets, had to pay twice. Is this still true?

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 10, 2015 @ 3:24 pm

    Hi Corey,
    If you stay within the same zone you will only have to pay once if you transfer between bus and SkyTrain within 90 minutes. However, as far as I know this only applies to those who use the Compass Card. I believe cash customers transferring from bus to rapid transit will have to buy another ticket.

  • By D, August 6, 2015 @ 12:15 pm

    In Toronto, $2.75 only covers one direction of travel. If you go one way then go back, it’s $2.75 + $2.75 no matter how quickly you do it.

    I can only imagine this will be the eventual way things will be here, too.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 6, 2015 @ 3:26 pm

    Hi D, at the moment there are no plans to implement any direction based fare changes. Thanks!

  • By Ben Kennedy, August 6, 2015 @ 12:32 pm

    So one-zone fare is going up by 31% in October for Compass users (as compared to the current $2.10 Fare Saver price). Steep. Bummer.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 6, 2015 @ 3:27 pm

    Hi Ben, that is not the case! With the Compass Card you can still pay faresaver rates.

  • By George Stevens, August 6, 2015 @ 12:37 pm

    To MG and D – that is the current official policy of translink – All bus fares are valid only for ONE direction of travel. Using the 90m window on a transfer for a return trip is technically not allowed by their rules.

    As someone who has already had two Compass screw-ups (tapout not recorded) getting off the West Coast Express, I’m glad the translink braintrust eliminated the tap-out madness. Getting off a crowded bus where everyone needs to tap and x% of tapouts dont work would be a nightmare.

    Translink – 7 exclamation marks in a news release is 7 too many.

  • By AJ, August 6, 2015 @ 12:42 pm

    So: I take the bus ($2.10 on my Compass Card) in Vancouver, then take skytrain from Vancouver to Burnaby (two zones).

    When I tap off the skytrain in Burnaby, am I being charged the difference between the two zone fare and the one zone fare (that I always paid on the bus), or am I being charged and entirely new two-zone fare on top of the one-zone bus fare?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 6, 2015 @ 3:31 pm

    Hi AJ, you will only pay two zones if you are using your Compass Card.

  • By Reva, August 6, 2015 @ 12:42 pm

    Get ready to put a lot of extra buses on zone-boundary-crossing routes that are easy alternatives to taking Skytrain or Seabus across 2 zones! 19, 28, 430, 240, etc…..

  • By Deej Barens, August 6, 2015 @ 12:48 pm

    How does this affect trips that require more than one bus? Does that mean for each bus we take we pay $2.75 again?

    Does this also include Skytrain as well?

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 12:55 pm

    The 90 minute transfer window will still be effect so u will not have to pay twice if u complete your trip within that allotted time. I don’t think one zone for bus will change travel habits much. For example if u were to go from from Main Street Science World to Metrotown, it’s better to take the train and pay 2 zones. 13 minute trip vs 40 to 50 minutes.

  • By Chris, August 6, 2015 @ 12:56 pm

    +1 million points for the comment above: “7 exclamation marks in a news release is 7 too many.”

  • By Lindsay, August 6, 2015 @ 1:12 pm

    I agree re. “7 exclamation marks in a news release is 7 too many.” Except, this is a blog. This is the news release: http://www.translink.ca/en/About-Us/Media/2015/August/Compass-project-moves-ahead-this-fall.aspx

  • By Lindsay, August 6, 2015 @ 1:16 pm

    I agree re. “7 exclamation marks in a news release is 7 too many.” Except, this is a blog. This is the news release: http://www.translink.ca/en/About-Us/Media/2015/August/Compass-project-moves-ahead-this-fall.aspx

  • By SteveS, August 6, 2015 @ 1:23 pm

    So I get on a bus in Surrey in zone 3 and then travel to Richmond in zone 2, then I get on the Canada line to take me to another station in zone 2. Is that 2.75 + 2.75?!

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 1:34 pm

    Steve S, you would pay only 2.75 since the bus ride is one zone and u did not cross a fare zone boundary on the Canada line. Keep in mind the 90 minute transfer window is still in effect

  • By Emily, August 6, 2015 @ 1:36 pm

    I take the bus from the North Shore to downtown every day. I currently use a 2-zone monthly pass. Sometimes I like to take the Seabus for a change, or once in a while when there is a problem on the Lions Gate bridge. Once the compass card comes, I will load the 1-zone monthly pass. What if I want to take the Seabus on certain days, do I need to pay extra on top of my 1-zone compass card? If so, how do I do that?
    Also, will the buses get a lot more crowded? (they already are!!)

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 1:39 pm

    Emily, u can load stored value on your compass card in addition to your monthly pass. When u tap out at the Seabus faregates, it will calculate the numbers of zones travelled and deduct the appropriate add fare

  • By SteveS, August 6, 2015 @ 1:44 pm

    Andrew – bus from Surrey to Richmond crosses two zones (Zone 3 -> Zone 2), so still not sure whether I’d be charged an extra 2.75 to travel the Canada Line staying within Zone 2.

  • By dan t, August 6, 2015 @ 1:57 pm

    SteveS – what I can interpret from the wording (it is somewhat ambiguous) the trip you describe is not a “bus-only” trip since you will have to tap in and out of the Canada Line, so I am guessing you will have to pay a regular 2 zone Compass Fare.

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 2:03 pm

    Steve S, as long as do not cross a fare zone while on Skytrain, u only pay once if the trip time is less than 90 minutes that is if u have a compass card. If u pay for a transfer on the bus, then u have to pay twice.

  • By DavidT, August 6, 2015 @ 3:33 pm

    I live on the North Shore. Used to use either a monthly pass or two-zone faresaver tickets….In the past, I was able to go all the way from my home to the airport via Canada Line without paying an additional fare.

    Will I now have to pay an additional fare, if I say i take the 240 bus to Granville, and then catch the Canada line to the airport?

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 3:42 pm

    Howdy Reva: You are completely correct that peoples travel patterns on transit will likely change because of the change to 1-Zone for buses. With the data collected by Compass, we should be able to get a better picture of how the system is being used compared with today and add and reduce service where it it needed (service optimization). That being said, there is no new money available to TransLink at the moment and we have a growing user base. I can tell you with confidence that the planning group of TransLink will do their best with what we have to make sure people get to where they need to go on public transit.

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 3:44 pm

    Hi Deej Barens: The flat one-zone only fare only applies to buses and will work, as it does today, within 90 minutes.

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 3:48 pm

    Chris and Lindsay: If you’re a regular reader of the Buzzer blog, you’ll know we are liberal users of the exclamation mark. If anything, we’ve been using it less over the last few years. However, your point is duly noted! (see, just one there…I couldn’t resist :)

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 3:52 pm

    Hi SteveS: It’s a lot of info the wrap your head around. It look me a while for sure. So, it will be the same number of zones and cost as what you pay for today to do the trip you mentioned. The only think that has changed is that if you make a trip using only a bus, it will cost you the price of a one zone trip. If you took buses from Surrey all the way to Richmond is will only cost you one zone fare, not two or three as has been the case until now. If you take any other mode of transit, like SkyTrain, WCE, SeaBus or Canada Line, it will be like it is today – the zone system. So, if you start your trip on a bus (1 zone only), then get on the SkyTrain but stay in zone 1, there will be no added cost to you. If you go from bus and then SkyTrain and go 2 or 3 zones, you will need to pay for going across those extra zones. It will be much like today when you pay for zone 1, then decide to go across another zone and need to AddFare.

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 3:58 pm

    SteveS: Andrew is correct.

  • By Dan Dynneson, August 6, 2015 @ 3:58 pm

    Translink has managed to shine up a turd. Under this model, a round trip to West Vancouver from Ladner would be $16.50 instead of $11. A round-trip to the grocery store would cost $5.50 instead of $2.75. Will they make all day passes cheaper than the current $9.75 (what I usually purchase)?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 11, 2015 @ 9:47 am

    Hey Dan,
    If you are paying with cash your fare would look like this:
    • Cash on the bus from Ladner to Bridgeport – one zone at $2.75.
    • New fare from Bridgeport to West Van which includes a Canada Line leg for two zones and a bus leg (no charge to transfer to bus, ever, if within transfer window) from downtown to West Van – total of two zones for $4.00 (unless SeaBus is used then three zones at $5.50)
    • Total of one way trip is $6.75 (or $8.25 if SeaBus is used)
    • Return trip is the same pricing since the journey starts on the bus in West Van and you can’t then transfer to Canada Line.
    Of course, using a compass card means that the price (using Stored Value) drops from $6.75 to $3.15 each way. As to your grocery store example, if your trip to and from the grocery store was completed within the 90 minute transfer window, your travel would only cost you $2.75 (or $2.10 with Stored Value on your Compass Card!).

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 4:03 pm

    DavidT: Good question! Compass Card works very similar to the existing system in that it can be loaded with the same fare media as you use today. So, if you load a monthly FareCard on your Compass Card it should work like it does today.

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 6, 2015 @ 4:05 pm

    Hi Dan: Well that’s a colourful question. I don’t have the answer for you, but I’ll find you one. Stay tuned…

  • By Carol, August 6, 2015 @ 4:11 pm

    So, what happens to the book of Faresaver tickets I just bought?

    Second question (depends on the answer to the first question). If I can use the Faresaver tickets from the airport that’s fine… but if I can’t then does that mean I need to pay $5 surcharge?

    What happens with tourists who come to town and don’t have a compass card?

    I just moved back to the mainland and I’m already beyond confused about how things work (especially the most confusing route of all = the 160 but that’s another issue).

  • By BD, August 6, 2015 @ 4:12 pm

    I take the bus from White Rock to the Canada Line station in Richmond and then the Canada Line to Waterfront.

    Is it going to cost me more, or less and how much tapping do I have to do?

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 4:23 pm

    Carol, faresavers can be converted to stored value. The $5 surcharge will apply if u need to purchase a compass ticket or load stored value at the 3 airport stations. As for the 160 bus route it will be a one zone trip.

    BD, from White Rock to Waterfront station, that would be a 2 zone trip. You would tap in when u get on the bus, tap in a Bridgeport station and tap out at Waterfront station.

  • By Elfren Ordanza, August 6, 2015 @ 4:29 pm

    It’s about time TransLink has the single-fare zone across the region! The 3-zone fare system is very confusing. Goodness sakes!

  • By SS, August 6, 2015 @ 4:42 pm

    Dan Dynneson: Don’t know how you get the $16.50 from, but if you get a Compass card, then each one-way trip from West Van to Ladner would be 2 zones, so that’s $6.30 round-trip instead of current $11 with cash.

  • By Joseph PS Klymkiw, August 6, 2015 @ 4:46 pm

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  • By Sheba, August 6, 2015 @ 4:59 pm

    What happens if a person takes a bus from Vancouver (zone 1) to Burnaby (zone 2) and then transfers to another Burnaby bus within the 90 mins transfer time? Would it all be a 1 zone fare or would the transfer in another zone bump it up to a 2 zone fare?

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 5:18 pm

    Sheba, that would be a one zone trip. You only pay for additional zones if u cross zone boundaries on Skytrain, Seabus, and West Coast Express.

  • By elevtechlift, August 6, 2015 @ 5:43 pm

    1. Every time I see a magnetic transfer (FareSaver, DayPass, etc.), can they be read with a simple inexpensive magnetic reader (DIY, $20 reader from eBay, etc.). I wonder if it is possible to modify the validators at SkyTrain (excluding Canada Line) and SeaBus stations with an inexpensive DIY Arduino project with a magnetic reader and Cubic Tri-Reader for Compass tickets so the validators can also dispense Compass tickets if the transfer has not expired. Then users can proceed with completing their journey and AddFare (if necessary). Also, I keep noticing the AddFare slot on the TVMs at Canada Line stations and I wonder if these TVMs can be shuffled around so each rail (SkyTrain, WCE, Canada Line) and SeaBus stations have at least one of these machines so riders can swap their valid magnetic ticket for a Compass ticket. Exceptions are stations with the modified validators.

    2. I wonder in the future if the bus fareboxes would get an upgrade to the Farebox 1030 from Cubic Transportation Systems (http://www.cubic.com/Portals/0/Publications/Farebox_1030.pdf) to accept both coins and bills yet also dispense Compass tickets and change (if possible through custom design) so users would have a lite TVM experience on the bus. If not, why? Is it because a new contractor was selected to overhaul existing AFC equipment?

    3. In the future, could the new bus fare structure also apply to other transport modes (i.e. could the new fare structure applied system-wide).

  • By Jordan, August 6, 2015 @ 8:06 pm

    Skytrain from Gilmore to Braid (all zone 2). Bus from Braid to Coquitlam (all zone 3). I didn’t cross zones while on skytrain so is this a one zone trip now, or still two?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 7, 2015 @ 11:57 am

    Hi Jordan, I believe this would all be one zone!

  • By Paul, August 6, 2015 @ 8:15 pm

    I won’t use any bad words but making all of Metro Vancouver one zone on any of the transportation methods (except WestCoast Express) means no need to tap out. I’m just imagining the headache at Burrard Station in the morning as 100’s of people pour off the train and bottleneck at the gates tapping out, waiting for the gate to open (if the tap out worked). And don’t forget that the same time dozens of people are trying to get into the station and using pretty much the same gates to tap in, waiting for the gate to open (if the tap in worked). Now multiply that to all the sky train stations and sea bus stations and I see massive piles of people pushing and utter chaos. Take away tapping out completely (except WCE) and I can see a lot more smiles on people’s faces as they embrace the new Compass system. Thanks! (one exclamation mark).

  • By Gennifer, August 6, 2015 @ 9:09 pm

    In my eyes, they’re just adding to the confusion by making it one zone on the buses but not on Skytrain and Seabus. Considering that there are few that use them that seem to know which way or where to insert the tickets with the magnetic stripe, nobody’s going to know what to make of the Compass Card or a system that rewards you for taking the long, multiple bus, easy to get lost unless you know where you’re going (it’s also a rarity to find someone who knows where they’re going, doesn’t matter whether they’re a driver or a passenger) way home. Whether a certain reader works or not shouldn’t matter. Until they get their craptastic system (anyone else listened to your drivers lately? They know what’s REALLY going on with the Compass system) figured out, the Lower Mainland should be one BIG zone with the exception of the WCE which has always had different fare pricing.

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 10:22 pm

    Jordan, that would be a one zone trip since u didn’t cross a fare zone boundary. For everyone else, keep in mind that the 90 minute transfer time is still in effect so u don’t need to pay for each individual part of the trip. So if u take a bus and transfer onto the Skytrain without crossing a fare boundary, it would only cost $2.75 not $5.50. If u take a bus, transfer onto the Skytrain cross one zone boundary and transfer to another bus, it would cost $4 not $9.50. Might take some time to figure this out but hopefully this helps

  • By Mark, August 6, 2015 @ 11:12 pm

    I take the 351 bus from White Rock to Bridgeport. I transfer to the Skytrain and take it to Waterfront. Today I would pay $4.20 with a 3 zone FareSaver. How much would I pay after these changes?

  • By Andrew, August 6, 2015 @ 11:30 pm

    Mark, u would pay $3.15 with compass stored value as this is now a 2 zone trip instead of 3 zones.

  • By Mark, August 6, 2015 @ 11:45 pm

    Thanks, Andrew. So $2.75 on the bus with Compass and then only $0.40 more with Compass to take the Skytrain over two zones?

  • By Sharon, August 6, 2015 @ 11:56 pm

    I am so confused!!!!! so I live in vancouver area, and if I want to take the bus, I take out the compass card and it charges me only for one zone anywhere and everywhere, I get that part. What I don’t get is that what if I want to transfer bus to a skytrain to go to burnaby or surrey? The compass card doesn’t cover that? I don’t get that part, please clarify. Thanks!

  • By canophone, August 7, 2015 @ 2:43 am

    “Mark, u would pay $3.15 with compass stored value as this is now a 2 zone trip instead of 3 zones.”

    Does this trip take more than 90 minutes? My understanding from ask compass is that if it’s more than 90 minutes with no tap off before the end of the 90 minutes when using Skytrain / Seabus, that it would end up being 3 zone… So while it would be considered a 2 zone trip if tapped on within 90 minutes, the actual result would be 3 zones charged.

  • By Raymond, August 7, 2015 @ 8:14 am

    how much would a compasss card cost me when i buy it at a compass card retailer?

  • By Andrew, August 7, 2015 @ 9:36 am

    Mark, if u buy a compass ticket then it’s 2.75 + 1.25 add fare. If u have a compass card with stored value, the it’s 2.10 + 1.05 add fare.
    canphone, as long as u tap in before 90 minutes for Skytrain and Seabus, u actually get 120 minutes to complete the last portion of your trip without incurring a 3 zone charge.
    Raymond, I heard it’s around $10 where $6 is a refundable deposit

  • By Andrew, August 7, 2015 @ 9:41 am

    Sharon, when u tap in on the bus it will charge u one zone and u get 90 minutes to complete your trip. When u tap off on the Skytrain it will see if u crossed a fare boundary. If u did, then it will apply the appropriate add fare. For example if u bus to Broadway transfer to Skytrain and get off at Metrotown, that would be a 2 zone trip. If u continue on Skytrain to Surrey then 3 zones. Basically the system is the same as today expect no more multizone buses

  • By Laura Tennant, August 7, 2015 @ 12:22 pm

    Andrew, thank you for answering so many questions!

  • By dan t, August 7, 2015 @ 10:07 am

    Robert/other editors, here’s a few hypothetical trips I’d like to run by you guys:

    Let’s say I live at Edmonds and want to go to UBC via the 49. From Edmonds to UBC, I would tap in and out on the Skytrain, then tap-in on the 49 to UBC. This would be a one zone fare since you wouldn’t know where I tapped out. But on the way back, I would have tap in at UBC, then tap in again at Metrotown and out at Edmonds. Is this a one-zone trip or a two-zone trip?

    How about the more extreme case, I board the 555 at Carvolth, then get to Lougheed. I then take the Skytrain to Metrotown and board the 49 all the way to UBC. Since I did not cross any zone boundaries while on a train, is this considered a one-zone trip?

  • By ally, August 7, 2015 @ 11:20 am

    I take 401 to Brighouse then transfer to Canada Line, how much will this cost me comparing to currently using a 2 zone monthly pass and will the monthly pass still be available? Thanks.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 7, 2015 @ 12:08 pm

    Hi Ally, if you ride the Canada Line from Richmond into Vancouver it will cost you two zones. Monthly passes are still available, but you will now have to load them on to your card!

  • By Mike, August 7, 2015 @ 11:50 am

    Since cards will be available by the end of October, will fare gates start to close shortly afterwards?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 7, 2015 @ 12:06 pm

    Hi Mike, fare gates will be closing in a rolled out approach until November when all gates will be closed.

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 10, 2015 @ 3:23 pm

    Hi Mike!

    While Compass cards continue to be distributed this fall/winter via terminals, having the card sent by mail, and at vendors etc., both the existing fare media (single ticket, transfers, FareCards etc.) and Compass Cards can be used on the entire transit system. Not until all the rail and boat mode stations are at a stage where they can close their gates will the use of non-Compass fare media be phased out.

  • By Joey Connick, August 7, 2015 @ 11:51 am

    @Gennifer: what they’ve done is made our fare structure (not costs) the same as in London, which makes sense because that’s where the tech was developed (or at least mass deployed) and it works there perfectly because there’s no tapping out on buses because in London, buses are zone-free.

    So systems where there’s a hardlink to Compass Central (or whatever we should call it) like
    Skytrain, WCE, and SeaBus, they can do tap-in/tap-out and calculate zones/distance and charge different fares. On buses, it’s all 1 zone (because the tech can’t handle tapping in and out fast enough over wireless/cellular data connections).

    It’s pretty sad and pathetic that instead of fixing the tech (or getting new tech), they’ve gone and rearranged the entire fare structure to fit the limitations of the tech, but then that’s really nothing new when it comes to big quasi-government tech projects.

    @Dan T: I think the point is when you tap in on a bus, it won’t “know” where you are (or at least it won’t care), so the only tapping that counts for zones is the tapping you do on rapid transit (Skytrain, WCE, or SeaBus). So if you are coming from UBC and you tap in to the Skytrain at Metrotown still within your 90-minute transfer window, all it knows (or cares about) is that you are on a valid transfer and this is the beginning of your (possibly-zoned) Skytrain trip. So if you crossed a zone boundary on Skytrain (say you went to Surrey, although really… that would be sad LOL), then you’d get charged the add fare from the 1-zone fare you had already paid. But if you got off at Edmonds, you are still within the same zone as Metrotown, and so no extra charge.

  • By Joey Connick, August 7, 2015 @ 11:53 am

    @Mike re: faregates closing

    Hahahahahahahahahaha

    Yeah… I’m pretty sure it will be months before they start closing the faregates. Look at the confusion just this change has produced. They’ll want people to get used to tapping in and out on rapid transit before they consider opening the Pandora’s Box of faregates that actually close and open.

  • By Terry, August 7, 2015 @ 12:01 pm

    If I buy a monthly pass will it work like the monthly passes today? Or do you deduct from a balance for every trip?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 7, 2015 @ 12:21 pm

    Hi Terry, monthly passes will work the same! The difference is that if you have a one zone pass and travel two zones you will need to add fare for the extra zone. A good way to make travel easier is to have a pass on your Compass Card as well as some stored value. That way the additional fare will be there when you tap off.

  • By Andrew, August 7, 2015 @ 1:55 pm

    Laura, no problem. Glad I could help

  • By BC Sam, August 7, 2015 @ 3:59 pm

    Can someone at TransLink explain how the bus fare change will be a ‘wash’ as claimed by TransLink yesterday?

    With a current 2-zone fare being 50% more than a 1-zone fare, there would need a 50% increase in current 2-zone riders to have the same revenue (e.g. from West Van to downtown). Similarly, with 3-zone fares being double 1-zone fares, then 3-zone bus ridership would need to double for it to be a ‘wash’ (on routes like the 160).

    Increases in ridership of this order of magnitude don’t seem reasonable (fare elasticity is typically around -0.3) and moreover more buses would be needed to accommodate them.

  • By Bill KInkaid, August 7, 2015 @ 8:51 pm

    First, why October 5 and not October 1? Second, if the new one zone system is in effect in October but the Compass cards aren’t available until later in October or after? And to get more to the point, what do I get for a bus pass for October (currently I have a two zone pass to go Vancouver to Richmond all by bus)?

  • By Raymond, August 7, 2015 @ 9:22 pm

    How much would a compass card cost me if i buy it a compass card retailer? Also say i get the compass card when it rolls out in October, how do i load Novembers pass on it right away.

  • By Lizeth, August 7, 2015 @ 9:54 pm

    Then how can I keep.track of my transactions. It has happened to me before that the vending machine charged me.three times my trip because it had a failure. I was paying with credit card and couldn’t see the transactions till later
    How can we avoid that?

  • By Andrew, August 7, 2015 @ 11:20 pm

    Raymond, according to the ask compass website it should be $10. If u want to load a monthly pass in advance, I think u have to wait till the 16th or 20th of the month using either a compass vending machine or online at compasscard.ca

    Lizeth, u can register your compass card at compasscard.ca where u will be able to pull up 15 months worth of transactions which includes when u loaded fare product, tap history with location and deducted fare amount

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 10, 2015 @ 9:44 am

    Hi Andrew: Thanks for the comment. You are indeed correct. We will be rolling out the fare gates at certain stations, so you’ll see some station gates close before others.

  • By Raymond, August 8, 2015 @ 7:34 am

    What is the specific day in October where Compass cards will be available to everyone?

  • By Raymond, August 8, 2015 @ 7:48 am

    Say i buy a comnpass card from a compass vending machine with $20.00, will it give me change back?

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 10, 2015 @ 3:19 pm

    Hi Raymond,
    Excellent question! Compass Vending Machines (CVM’s) will function in a similar way to today’s Ticket Vending Machines (TVM’s) and will accept multiple forms of payment as well as give change. Don’t forget, by registering your card at http://www.compasscard.ca you can load up your card with stored value and pass products, as well as enable autoload so you never have to worry about hunting for payment while you’re on the system! Registering your card also protects the balance from lost or stolen cards!

  • By Frank, August 8, 2015 @ 4:55 pm

    If starting on October 5th compass cards will start to be used, does that mean FareCards will still be used in October? October 1st to 4th would still require some form of paper or cash payment. Also, will the SkyTrain gates be closing in October? If you buy a FareCard and the gates are closing in October how will those who have a FareCard be able to get through the gates without having to purchase a compass ticket?

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 10, 2015 @ 3:16 pm

    Hi Frank!
    Great question! While Compass cards continue to be distributed this fall/winter via terminals, having the card sent by mail, and at vendors etc., both the existing fare media (single ticket, transfers, FareCards etc.) and Compass Cards can be used on the entire transit system. Not until all the rail and boat mode stations are at a stage where they can close their gates will the use of non-Compass fare media be phased out.

  • By Murray, August 9, 2015 @ 4:29 pm

    So if I pay cash for my trip from North Van to St Pauls for my appointment I will pay 2.75 to seabus and and 4.75 for seabus. That’s an extra 5.50 return for a total of 15.00 to receive the medical attention I need. Seems to me the best finacial solution for me is to take a car. Doesn’t seem like the best solution for congestion or enviroment. All because people can’t remember to tapout.

  • By Andrew, August 9, 2015 @ 4:58 pm

    Murray, if u take a bus from north van and tranfer to the Seabus, it only costs $4 (2 zones which is the same as today) as the 90 minute tranfer time still exists, not pay per each individual trip. You will only have to pay $2.75 for the bus + $4 for the Seabus if u do not have a compass card so get one when u have a chance to

  • By Frank, August 9, 2015 @ 5:59 pm

    Starting on October 5th compass cards will be used, does that mean FareCards will still be used in October? October 1st to 4th would still require some form of paper or cash payment. Also, will the SkyTrain gates be closing in October? If you buy a FareCard and the gates are closing in October how will those who have a FareCard be able to get through the gates without having to purchase a compass ticket?

  • By Raymond, August 9, 2015 @ 8:24 pm

    What if i need help using my compass card?

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 10, 2015 @ 3:08 pm

    Hi Raymond!
    As a part of our Compass public education program, staff will be out at stations later this month to support the switch to Compass Vending Machines. Staff will help customers learn how to use the new machines and understand the ins-and-outs of tapping as well as answer your questions and provide support. And don’t forget askcompass.ca!

  • By Andrew, August 9, 2015 @ 10:23 pm

    Frank, according to translink, people will be able to load a monthly passes onto compass cards starting in November so the paper passes will still be used in October. The faregates will stay open until people have ample time to get a compass card. I assume faregates will begin closing in January or Feburary 2016.

    Raymond, there will be attendants and compass card teams at most Skytrain stations to help with the transition. I have been using a compass card since April and it’s very easy. Simplely place your card flat against the reader until you hear a beep and see a green check arrow. Takes less than 1 second for the card to read. Make sure u are not tapping a wallet with credit or debit cards or it won’t read properly.

  • By Raymond, August 10, 2015 @ 6:55 am

    If i buy a compass card from a compass vending machine with $20.00 will it give me change back?

  • By Robert Willis - Buzzer Editor, August 10, 2015 @ 9:40 am

    You sure will. Thanks Raymond!

  • By Raymond, August 10, 2015 @ 10:31 am

    when is the specific date in October that i can get my own compass card?

  • By Andrew, August 10, 2015 @ 12:36 pm

    Raymond, translink will release more information about specific dates in the next few weeks so keep an eye for that. If u are really impatient and want a compass card now, u can pick one up anytime at the west coast express office located on the second floor at Waterfront station

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 10, 2015 @ 2:47 pm

    Thanks Andrew!

    Hi Raymond,

    Sarah here from TransLink Communications – As Andrew said, more information including specific dates will be released soon! Make sure you stay tuned to the Buzzer Blog, as well as follow us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/translink) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/translink) to stay in the know!

  • By Raymond, August 10, 2015 @ 8:39 pm

    Hi there, if i go the west coast express office on the second floor of Waterfront Station, would they give me a Compass card even though i dont take the westcoast express.

  • By Raymond, August 10, 2015 @ 8:48 pm

    Also i have a question about Autoload, when does it debit my bank account?

  • By Andrew, August 10, 2015 @ 9:11 pm

    Raymond, according to translink via twitter: https://twitter.com/translink/status/630923712125120512
    As for auto load, it will automatically debit your bank account whenever stored value drops below $5. Not sure about monthly passes

  • By Murray, August 11, 2015 @ 2:35 pm

    So i am still going to have a 44% increase in my transit fare to get from NS to St. Paul’s if i pay cash

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 11, 2015 @ 3:16 pm

    Hi Murray,
    Actually, if you pay cash, and travel via bus only to St.Paul’s you will likely see a decrease in fare as the trip is now one zone only which is now $2.75. If you transfer to SeaBus or SkyTrain, or even back to bus, you will pay your one zone $2.75 fare, plus $4.00 for the SeaBus. Grab a Compass Card in person from the Compass Customer Service Centre, West Coast Express, Online, or by Phone to ensure you’re getting the best rate using your stored value or loaded pass product.

  • By Raymond, August 11, 2015 @ 8:44 pm

    Would i be able to pick up a compass card at the west coast express office even though i’m not technically a west coast express customer.

  • By Raymond, August 12, 2015 @ 7:30 am

    How would i load stored value onto the card?

  • By Raymond, August 12, 2015 @ 7:53 am

    will Compass vending machines only be located at the skytrain stations? Will they be at the canada line stations too?

  • By Sarah Kertcher, August 12, 2015 @ 9:51 am

    Hi Raymond,
    Yes, anyone can pick up a Compass Card at the West Coast Express office. You can also pick one up at the Compass Customer Service Centre or from the Compass Vending Machines that will be in operation soon. All Compass fare media will be available for purchase at Canada Line stations as well as Expo/Millennium stations. As far as loading stored value on to your card, you can do that in persona at the Compass Customer Service Centre or at CVM’s, Online at compasscard.ca, or by phone 1-888-207-4055!

  • By Raymond, August 12, 2015 @ 10:52 am

    In August, when the compass vending machines are turned on, will they be stocked with compass cards right away.

  • By Raymond, August 12, 2015 @ 8:58 pm

    Also u said im able to pick up a compass card at the compass customer service centre? so i assume i can only put stored value on that one too? Would it cost me money to pick one up either from the west coast express office or the compass customer service centre?

  • By Raymond, August 12, 2015 @ 9:24 pm

    It also said on the compass timeline that more customers will be getting compass in the month of September, so does that include the general public?

  • By Raymond, August 12, 2015 @ 9:27 pm

    It says that right now compass cards are only available to WCE customers and U-pass bc students, so how does that mean anyone can pick up a compass card at the WCE office or Compass customer service centre.

  • By Sheba, August 13, 2015 @ 6:29 pm

    Raymond: Yes you can pick up a Compass Card now – currently monthly passes aren’t available, only stored value (aka fare savers) and WCE passes. On another site I’ve been reading about people (the general public as well as students) using their cards without problems.

  • By Raymond, August 13, 2015 @ 9:41 pm

    How come compass customer service has told me i cant pick up a compass card now.

  • By Anonymous, August 13, 2015 @ 11:03 pm

    Raymond, compass card pick up is at the West Coast Express Office at Waterfront, NOT the customer service office at Stadium. Just go in and ask them for a compass card. If they do ask if you are a West Coast Express customer, just say yes even if you are not. It’s that simple. Also they should be available at compass vending machines located at Waterfront, Port Moody, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Maple Meadows, and Mission Stations. Otherwise just be patient and wait for Translink to release more information and pick it up mid-October if it’s really a hassle.

  • By Anonymous, August 13, 2015 @ 11:08 pm

    The current compass cards will be marked Initial Release No Deposit so you will not have to pay to pick one up. After you get it, load it up with stored value at an operating compass machine, by phone, or online at http://www.compasscard.ca

  • By Raymond, August 14, 2015 @ 8:32 am

    so right now there is no operating compass vending machine?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 14, 2015 @ 10:11 am

    Hi Raymond, Compass Vending Machines will be activated over the next 8 weeks station by station. At the moment I am not entirely sure where they are in this process, but if you would like a Compass Card, you can get one at the West Coast Express Office. Thanks.

  • By Raymond, August 14, 2015 @ 8:40 am

    Also how do i get to the west coast express train station from the canada line waterfront station?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 14, 2015 @ 10:07 am

    Hey Raymond, the West Coast Express (WCE) station and the Canada Line both have stations at Waterfront. From the Canada Line there should be signs directing you up the stairs toward the WCE station. If you get lost, look for a Canada Line attendant to show you the way!

  • By Raymond, August 14, 2015 @ 10:09 am

    At the WCE waterfront station, is there a compass vending machine there right now that will give me a Compass card that i can put stored value on.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 14, 2015 @ 10:13 am

    That’s correct, Raymond. If you want a Compass Card, go for it!

  • By Raymond, August 14, 2015 @ 10:20 am

    I need directions to the WCE office at waterfront station.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 14, 2015 @ 10:40 am

    Hi Raymond, at Waterfront Station go right of the Starbucks and there will be an elevator. Take the lift to the second floor and it’s right there! You can find all of their office details here: http://www.translink.ca/en/About-Us/Corporate-Overview/Operating-Companies/WCE/WCE-Customer-Service.aspx. Thanks.

  • By Raymond, August 14, 2015 @ 10:55 am

    Hi Laura,

    So when i got off the canada line train at Waterfront, do i have to walk up some stairs to get to the starbucks.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 14, 2015 @ 11:16 am

    Hi Raymond, there is an elevator that will take you to the main level with the Starbucks.

  • By Raymond, August 14, 2015 @ 8:23 pm

    AT the WCE waterfront station, can i get a compass card from the compass vending machine there.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 17, 2015 @ 9:18 am

    Hi Raymond, you can purchase a Compass Card from the vending machines at Waterfront!

  • By Raymond, August 16, 2015 @ 9:25 am

    Or can i only get one at the west coast express office.

  • By Citlalli, August 17, 2015 @ 2:40 am

    This is expensive.. If I take the bus from zone two every day, monthly pass cost 124, but if I choose to use the compass card in October the bus rate will be $ 130 two trips every day, 6 days per week… I will spend more money..

  • By Laura Tennant, August 17, 2015 @ 9:44 am

    Hi Citlalli, you can load monthly passes on to your Compass Card. How many zones are you travelling and are they bus-only? Thanks!

  • By Raymond, August 17, 2015 @ 8:56 am

    when i phone in to add stored value to my compass card, do i have to talk to a actual person.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 17, 2015 @ 10:08 am

    Hey Raymond, it all depends when you call! If you phone between the hours of 6am-8pm, an agent will be available to speak with you. If you have a credit card and setup your Compass Card in advance, you can load your card 24 hours a day using our automated system.

  • By Raymond, August 17, 2015 @ 8:59 am

    how do i get pre authorized debit setup?

  • By Laura Tennant, August 17, 2015 @ 9:20 am

    Hi Raymond, you can register your card here https://www.compasscard.ca/. If you have more Compass Card questions you can ask them at http://askcompass.ca/. Thanks!

  • By Raymond, August 17, 2015 @ 9:30 am

    I tried going to the compass vending machine at Waterfront station but its not on.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 17, 2015 @ 9:34 am

    Hi Raymond, I’m sorry to hear that. In that case, I recommend that you go to the West Coast Express Office for your Compass Card. Office details can be found here: http://www.translink.ca/en/About-Us/Corporate-Overview/Operating-Companies/WCE/WCE-Customer-Service.aspx.

  • By Raymond, August 17, 2015 @ 9:36 am

    How does someone with no credit card load stored value onto their compass card.

  • By Laura Tennant, August 17, 2015 @ 9:45 am

    Hi Raymond, you can load value in-person at the West Coast Express Office.

  • By Raymond, August 17, 2015 @ 9:07 pm

    how long does it take for stored value to get loaded on my card when i do it online.

  • By Raymond, August 17, 2015 @ 9:13 pm

    When will pre authorize debit from a bank account be available for the compass card?

  • By Raymond, August 18, 2015 @ 6:40 am

    Also i used a prepaid credit card to add $10.00 of stored value to my card and it didnt work for some reason.

  • By Raymond, August 18, 2015 @ 7:52 am

    Are the compass vending machines at the 18 london drug locations activated and on?

  • By Maggie, August 19, 2015 @ 4:32 pm

    Do I need to add fare when I use 2 zone (zone 1 & 2) monthly pass to take bus in Zone 3 ?

  • By Todd, August 23, 2015 @ 2:43 pm

    So for current riders using FareSaver tickets the new Compass cards won’t be available until October, but according to all of the Fare Dealers I have spoken with, the existing FareSaver ticket books are out of stock and they have no idea if any more will be issued?

    Does it really make sense to discontinue one payment program more than a month before the widespread implementation of the program meant to take its place?

    Seems like a pretty botched roll-out, I think.

  • By Tim, August 24, 2015 @ 11:06 am

    I’m confused about the $6 deposit required for compass cards. (And I’m not so thrilled about this idea.)
    I read something in the list about a “no deposit card”. Where and when are these available?
    Thanks for your assistance.

  • By Anonymous, August 24, 2015 @ 12:23 pm

    Maggie, you will not need add fare since all buses are one zone. Also with compass card, u do not need to specify zone 1/2 or zone 2/3 with a 2 zone monthly pass anymore.
    Todd, faresavers tickets are still in use until November. Translink was having issues with the manufacturer that prints the faresavers which led to a shortage.
    Tim, the $6 deposit is an extra pool of money in case u need to pay for add fare and have a 0 balance on your card. Unfortunately the no deposit cards are not available anymore. They were only given to initial upass and west coast express users. The good news is the $6 deposit is refundable. Make sure to register it on http://www.compasscard.ca to get balance protection in case u lose the card.

  • By Raymond, August 24, 2015 @ 1:56 pm

    Hi there, i have a question, i have a compass card with a $6.00 deposit on it and when i tapped in at Waterfront for the skytrain, it said stop insufficient fare, can u explain why it did that.

  • By Anonymous, August 24, 2015 @ 2:47 pm

    Raymond, you need a balance of at least $0.01 in order to have sufficient fare. The $6 deposit is an extra pool of money as a backup. However, it needs to be topped up again before u can ride transit again next time. Sorry about the confusion with the 0 balance.

  • By Raymond, August 24, 2015 @ 6:25 pm

    so if i put $10.00 stored value onto my compass card and tap in at a skytrain station, would it work?

  • By Anonymous, August 24, 2015 @ 11:13 pm

    Yes it would work. Just remember to tap out to avoid being charged 3 zones

  • By Raymond, August 25, 2015 @ 11:09 am

    The other question i have is about the bus on one zone thing happening on October 5th, say i tap in on the #3 to go to Marine Drive station, then i want to transfer at Bridgeport to the #430 then do i need to tap in again?

  • By Anonymous, August 25, 2015 @ 2:50 pm

    After October 5 when buses are 1 zone, you would tap in when u board the 3 bus, tap in at Marine station, tap out at Bridgeport station, and tap in again on the 430 bus. If u want to use compass card with stored value now until October 5, u must tap in and out each mode of transportation as the card readers are still programmed to charge 3 zones.

  • By Raymond, August 26, 2015 @ 2:53 pm

    The other question i have is for october, will monthly bus passes still be available?

  • By Anonymous, August 26, 2015 @ 5:48 pm

    October will still be paper passes. November is when monthly passes can be loaded onto compass cards

  • By Raymond, August 26, 2015 @ 7:30 pm

    and when will the pre-authorized debit system be in place online on the compass.ca website?

  • By Anonymous, August 26, 2015 @ 9:23 pm

    I think u can set that up by visiting or calling compass customer service although I cannot confirm. If u have any further questions, use askcompass.ca. There are many others who may have the same questions as you

  • By Anonymous, August 26, 2015 @ 9:48 pm

    I just asked Translink on Twitter and the online website is credit only with no plans to add preauthorized debit. One alternative around this would be to use a visa debit card. If you only have a debit card, u can go to the bank and upgrade to the newest card which is a visa debit card

  • By Raymond, August 27, 2015 @ 6:40 am

    what is a visa debit?

  • By Raymond, August 27, 2015 @ 8:29 am

    Right now can i go to the compass vending machine at Lougheed station and load Novembers monthly pass to my compass card?

  • By Anonymous, August 27, 2015 @ 10:01 am

    Visa debit is a method a payment that allows u to pay with debit where visa is accepted. If u have any further questions use askcompass.ca. This thread is getting quite long

  • By anonymous, September 6, 2015 @ 2:06 pm

    I do not live in Vancouver. I take the blue bus from Horseshoe Bay to downtown, then skytrain Vancouver – Burnaby. My trip will now cost me more as I will pay 1 zone bus, then 2 zone skytrain. It was cheaper before !!!

  • By Donna Twemlow, September 8, 2015 @ 11:51 am

    This seems to me as altogether a bunch of nonsense. With my regular 2 zone pass I don’t have to worry about transfer times, just show it whenever I get on Transit [bus, Canada Line or whatever]. This new fare is utterly UNFAIR to those of us in Richmond or south of the tunnel who are forced to use Canada Line because Translink removed all of our express bus service to Vancouver. So you are going to ding us extra due to your changes, changes that we had no say in [since Translink ignored all of our petitions etc.] and you are going to lower the prices for those who CAN take bus only trips to work, school etc and penalize those of us who YOU put in the position of not being able to do so.

  • By CC, September 10, 2015 @ 10:19 am

    Can I still use my fare saver tickets in November? I don’t use the train everyday but I just bought a brand new 2 and 1 zone fare savers. It usually takes me 2-3 months to use them all. When is the latest that the fare saver paper tickets are still effective?

  • By Raymond, September 12, 2015 @ 3:18 am

    when will cvms be activated at the king edward skytrain station?

  • By Raymond, September 13, 2015 @ 11:09 am

    If i load a monthly pass onto my compass card at a Compass vending machine, then can i use my monthly pass right away?

  • By Pavel, January 5, 2016 @ 11:36 am

    “Faresavers can be converted to stored value”.

    Great to hear that for 192nd time. Would you be so kind as to explain HOW one can do that exactly? I’m stuck with a fresh pack of those.

  • By Shauna, January 14, 2016 @ 2:05 am

    Hello I am so confused. Can someone help me? I haven’t taken the bus in months and it seems everything has changed. Faresavers will no longer be available? Is this true? I am planning on taking transit both bus n sky train next week and was planning on buying tickets but I hear it is no more? So I have to pay the bus in coins? I’ll be making 7 trips and not interested in buying compass card.

  • By Irene, February 1, 2016 @ 7:49 am

    So i took my regular route today from richmond to vancouver by bus on three transfers. Since the monthly pass will not be automatically available, i was charged twice from my extra load, though Im still within the 90 min limit. What the heck!

  • By Sandra Smith, April 10, 2016 @ 2:45 pm

    Why is it still $4.75 to go from Scott Road to Columbia by skytrain? The fare structure review is taking too long. Just a matter of time when someone launches a human rights complaint on the basis of discrimination. Someone from Vancouver can go all the way from UBC to Joyce on a one zone fare. I thought Compass was to make the system fair!?

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