The Dreaded BART Fare Increases Have Arrived

A 2.7 percent increase and a 50-cent fee for paper tickets mean slightly tighter budgeting in 2018.

BART riders returning to work Tuesday may have noticed slightly more money deducted from their Clipper card balance in one 2018’s first rude awakenings.

Its Board of Directors approved the 2.7 percent fare increase in June, along with a 50 -cent fee for using paper tickets. The price hikes took effect Jan. 1.

For reference, using a reusable Clipper card to ride BART within San Francisco costs $2 — or another five cents — while a one-way ticket from Powell Street to Lake Merritt totals $3.50. Commuters can use BART’s fare calculator to find out just how much more they have to spend to live or commute here.

Paper tickets are also on their way out. Clipper cards cost $3, with BART pledging to have at least 100 machines selling them at its stations to save riders from a trek to Walgreens. By encouraging people to use Clipper, the transit agency says there will be less fare gate jams and a smoother shuffling of the masses.

(But riders who buy the card at a vending machine ought to register them, allowing the ability to auto-load and to recover the balance if the card goes missing.)

BART did expand the few discounts they have for youth up to 12 years old. Now, kids 18 or younger can get 50 percent off fares.

Children four years or younger ride still ride for free and the senior discount will remain at 62.5 percent.

Riders who like to give themselves a 100 percent discount will have a tougher time doing so. Jan. 1 also brought a new proof of payment system akin to Muni’s, hoping to offset an estimated $15 to $25 million lost each year from fare evasion, SF Weekly previously reported.


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