The next step in the city’s electronic fare system opens it to seniors and low-income transit users starting in March.
Calgary Transit began offering passes for both groups beginning Feb. 6. They can begin use of those passes in March of this year.
My Fare is Calgary Transit’s mobile ticketing app. Users can download the app and then purchase passes via the e-store for delivery to the user’s phone.
Misty Sklar, acting manager of transit, said it provides more access to users that may not be able to get paper passes when they need them.
“It’s actually going to stop people having to line up at one of our three locations throughout the city to get these passes in person,” she said.
Sklar said it’s a bit of a different process from the paper tickets. They are physically acquired and then used for the upcoming months. Users will have to purchase their seniors or low-income transit pass online in the store. The purchase is not done in the app.
Larry Mathieson, Chief Executive Officer for the Kerby Centre, said this provides convenience and time savings for seniors.
“Recent stats show that two-thirds of Canadian seniors have a smartphone, so this is a great option to get their pass quickly rather than wait for a paper copy by mail,” he said.
“Over the course of the pandemic, we’ve seen more and more seniors becoming comfortable with tech solutions. MyFare has been a very useful addition to our transit system, and we are glad to see its functionality expanded.”
More My Fare options on the horizon
Sklar said the city is looking at adding even more to the My Fare system in the future.
They have a Request for Proposals (RFP) out right now that’s after different options for an integrated transportation solution.
“It's all about integrating things to make it easier for people to not just access our service but understand it, and pay for it, and be interconnected with other modes,” she said.
“This is really where the future is going is to integrate different modes throughout the city and make it as easy as possible to do that.”
In a perfect world, Sklar said she’s like to see a system that eventually helps integrate the so-called first mile and last-mile connections to Calgary Transit. That could mean potential integration with things like scooters, e-bikes and car sharing.
There’s also a potential to look at regional transit integration under future My Fare options.