Public Transport Guide Vancouver
Metro Vancouver’s public transit system is among the best in the country and has much to offer in the way of convenience, accessibility, and safety. According to CMBC, there are bus stops within 400 meters of the homes of 85% of Metro Vancouver’s population. There are three rapid transit lines running into Richmond, Surrey, and Coquitlam, with a fourth planned line connecting Coquitlam and Port Moody to Vancouver, slated to be completed in 2014. The WCE provides commuters with a more sustainable, more convenient option than driving into the city from the easternmost part of the Greater Vancouver area. HandyDART provides accessible transportation for those requiring assistance when using public transit including door-to-door service.
The SkyTrain, Canada Line, and the CMBC trolley buses are powered by electricity with zero emissions, making Vancouver a cleaner place to live with superior air quality.
Public transit is generally clean. The buses are cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis, and no food or open drinks are allowed on board, ensuring a cleaner ride for all.
Fare Information from TransLink’s Website
Buying a single fare lets you travel for up to 90 minutes across the Lower Mainland. You can hop off for errands and then hop back on again. You can travel for one, two or three zones by bus, SeaBus or SkyTrain [includes Canada Line]. Tickets for West Coast Express must be purchased separately as they are priced differently. You can get a Compass pass to use on all Vancouver transit options.
• Buses require exact coin fare.
• SkyTrain TVMs accept coins (except pennies) and bills (up to $20).
• Debit and credit cards are accepted at most SkyTrain Station TVMs.
• Base cost is $4.24 plus a $5 Canada Line YVR AddFare is applicable to travel departing from any of the stations on Sea Island destined for Bridgeport Station or beyond.
Concession fares apply to children 5 to 13 years old, secondary students ages 14 to 19 with a valid GoCard, seniors 65+ with proof of age and HandyCard holders riding conventional transit. These people can travel at a reduced price.
Please note that concession fares are not valid on HandyDART. Regular adult fares apply on HandyDART regardless of age.
Children 4 years and younger ride for free when accompanied by an adult.
FareSaver Tickets are a book of ten TransLink tickets that can be used on the Bus, SeaBus or SkyTrain. They offer savings over buying single fares.
For example, buying 10 single fare tickets for 1 zone will cost you $25, while using FareSaver tickets costs only $21, saving 16%. On a daily basis, travel to and from work in one zone will cost you $5.00 per day paying with cash, or $4.20 using FareSaver tickets.
Each FareSaver lets you travel for up to 90 minutes across Metro Vancouver. You can hop off for errands and then hop back on again.
You can travel for one, two or three zones by Bus, SeaBus or SkyTrain. Tickets for the West Coast Express must be purchased separately as they are priced differently.
If you have bought a one-zone fare but need to travel through two or three zones, you can upgrade your ticket on the bus or at SkyTrain or SeaBus ticket vending machines with a proof of payment transfer. You can get details on pricing here: https://www.translink.ca/transit-fares
Where to buy tickets
FareSaver tickets are available at any authorized FareDealer location such as Mac’s, 7-Eleven, Safeway or London Drugs.
Use a DayPass to travel whenever, and wherever, you want all day.
A DayPass provides unlimited transit use on all buses, SkyTrain and SeaBus for one day from the start of the first transit service to the end of the service day. You can use it for travel through all zones, and save money over buying single fares when you take multiple trips.
Why buy a DayPass?
If you’re traveling downtown and back through three zones, a DayPass will cost you $9, whereas paying with cash costs $10. A DayPass also allows you to take additional transit trips during the day at no extra cost, such as boarding the SeaBus to North Vancouver.
A DayPass is handy for tourists who want unrestricted travel within all three zones for the entire day or who will be taking several bus trips to different tourist locations throughout the day.
If you’re fitting many errands across town into your day, a DayPass can save you money and allow you the freedom of additional trips at no extra cost.
You can also save by using your DayPass as a credit towards a West Coast Express ticket. Just buy an AddFare ticket at a West Coast Express ticket vending machine.
Buying a DayPass
You can buy a DayPass from any authorized FareDealer location or ticket vending machine (TVM)*. DayPasses purchased at FareDealer locations must be validated before use on the day of travel either at a ticket validator machine located at SeaBus and SkyTrain stations or using the farebox on buses. DayPasses purchased at TVMs don’t need to be validated, and are good for use on the day of purchase only. See our Paying Your Fare page for more information.
*(Please note that DayPasses are not available at Sea Island Station TVMs.)
Day passes can also be purchased at gift shops on the following BC Ferries routes. day passes purchased at these gift shops must be validated before use on the day of travel either at a ticket validator machine located at SeaBus and SkyTrain stations or using the farebox on buses. DayPasses will be sold on these routes until further notice.
- Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen
- Nanaimo to Horseshoe Bay
- Langdale to Horseshoe Bay
- Long Harbour on Saltspring Island to Tsawwassen
- Duke Point to Tsawwassen
You can buy a Monthly Pass (FareCards) for one, two or three-zone travel by bus, SeaBus, and SkyTrain services. Tickets for West Coast Express must be purchased separately as they are priced differently.
Buying a Monthly Pass
Monthly Passes (FareCards) are valid only for the month shown, are transferable, and are sold at FareDealer locations the last few days of the preceding month as well as the first few days of the applicable month. Availability and form of accepted payment vary by location.
FareCards can be purchased after the above stated period from either the Lottery Ticket Centre at the Pacific Centre Mall (700 W. Georgia, 604.689.1422) or at the TransLink FareDealer office in the lobby of Metrotower I (604.453.4490). Always call in advance to verify availability.
FareCards are not pro-rated for purchase at any point during the month.
Monthly Passes (FareCards) provide unlimited travel within the selected zone(s) on weekdays and across all zones on weekends, statutory holidays, and after 6:30 p.m. on weekday evenings.
Sunday and Holiday FareCard Special (for the monthly pass)
On Sundays and Statutory Holidays you can use your FareCard to take five other riders with you for free! A total of six riders is allowed: Two adults (14 and older) and up to four children (13 and under) can ride on a single Adult FareCard, West Coast Express 28-day Pass, or Annual Employer Transit Pass. (Does not apply to Concession Passes.)