Happy New Year!
So it's 2013 and we have a few changes.
Some changes coming now.
And more changes later in the year.
But let's start with the immediate changes; who they affect and who they don't.
The Smart Card.
You've seen all of our Smart Card readers, the new radios and heard about the changes on all the local news channels.
I've been asked about this constantly for the last six months.
The Smart Card is replacing the myriad of Passes RTD has out there.
From the 6 bazillion College passes to the 4 trillion Eco and NEco passes.
All the tickets and coupons and all the different Monthly passes.
And eliminate 90% of the transfers we hand out.
As of this month, the Smart Card only affects those with College & Eco (NEco) Passes.
For College students, when your current sticker expires you'll be given the new College Pass Smart Card.
For Eco Pass holders, if you haven't already been given your new Smart Card, it's on its way to you now.
Hang onto your current pass and make sure you still have your sticker on it.
We're extending any deadlines/expiry dates to January 31st of this year.
This way Eco Pass holders have a chance to get the new cards and still use their old ones while they wait.
But that's the extent of the current changes: Eco & College Smart Cards.
Regular Monthly passes don't go "Smart" until the Fall and we'll be selling Tickets & Coupons at least until then and accepting them through the end of this year when they all expire.
So if you use Monthly Passes and/or Tickets & Coupons, you won't see any changes this month.
And NO - at this time, there are no Fare increases being announced, at least none that I've heard or read on RTD's site!
Starting in 2014, the only folks who'll be using cash and asking for paper transfers will be the one time and first time riders who probably won't ride again or who've only just begun to learn how to use the system.
This is what I've been taught, told and what I've learned so far.
But I strongly recommend you call in (303-299-6000) and ask them, they know far more than I.
And read RTD's web site.
There are a ton of pages dedicated to this change.
There is a customer service number for the Smart Card as well (303-299-2273)
And don't forget that there are Service Changes coming up next week.
The new schedules are in the buses and Stations as we speak, grab the new ones so there are no surprises come Sunday (January 6th).
As Always, "Welcome aboard, Find your seats, Break out the Smart Cards - Let's Roll!"