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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Clipper Updates: VTA Ready in February & BART Parking Now Available

There are two big announcements for the expansion of the Clipper card program:

VTA will be joining the Clipper family in February, but there will be some limitations on their first phase of public usage:
  • VTA will accept Clipper e-cash for single rides only. There will be no e-cash pass accumulator (if you tag your card multiple times, you'll earn a day pass). If you need a day pass, pay for one with cash to the driver or use a light rail ticketing machine.
  • Only monthly VTA passes will be sold (adult, express, senior, youth, & disabled). No day passes and annual passes.
  • If you pay e-cash to use light rail, you will have two hours to complete your journey. Tag your card at the platform stop reader, as there will not be one on the train.
  • In-person locations to add Clipper e-cash or passes are very limited. Review this map to find your nearest location; otherwise, consider adding value via phone or online. MTC and Clipper intends to add more places to add value through upgraded light rail ticketing machines.
  • Inter agency transfers will be honored. If you have a two or more zone Caltrain pass on Clipper, VTA will give you a local fare credit. If you transfer from AC Transit, BART, or Samtrans (monthly passes only), you will also get a local transfer credit within their time limitations (listed here). If you are going to ride a VTA express bus, you must have $2 in e-cash on your card to pay your express bus upgrade ($2 local fare credit paid w/inter agency transfer & $2 express upgrade fee charged to e-cash).
Translink Card - BART

BART Parking is now available on Clipper too!
Due to the transition of EZ Rider, the folks at Cubic was able to find a way to transition EZ Rider to Clipper; but even if you don't have EZ Rider for parking, you can sign-up your Clipper card for BART parking.
  1. To register for BART parking, go to the EZ Rider website.
  2. Select the appropriate option, if you are transitioning EZ Rider card parking to Clipper, or you don't have EZ Rider and you want it on your Clipper account.
  3. You will need to input a credit or debit card to get enrolled.
  4. You will be charged a $2 hang tag fee on your credit/debit card. The tag you place on your rear view mirror is mailed to you a few days later.
  5. Select your preferred station location and BART will determine how much to initially pre-fund your account. This is charged to your credit/debit card.
  6. Once everything is setup and you get your hang tag, park at a BART station, tag your Clipper card inside the station, and you are good to go. Your Clipper card account is linked with your unique hang tag ID#, so don't lose the tag or use a different Clipper card.
Lastly, I've updated the Muni gates tutorial video with footage of how to tag your Clipper card on the gates. Enjoy!


Anureita Rao said...

I have a question about the fact that 'Inter agency transfers will be honored' between VTA and Caltrain. If I have a monthly pass (3 zone) for caltrain loaded on my clipper card, then post 16th Feb how exactly do I use my clipper card on the VTA? Do I need to tag on and off every day? Or once a month? Or not at all?

Akit said...

You are still required to tag-on and off on Caltrain for your first day of travel for the new month. This encodes your card for valid travel between the zones you purchased for the month.

When you board VTA, you must have your Caltrain pass active on your Clipper card. You just tag your card on the bus or the platform reader at light rail stations. When you tag, your ride is free, except express routes, where your card will "pay" the $2 fare credit due to your Caltrain pass, and deduct an extra $2 to make-up for the express bus surcharge.

Anureita Rao said...

Thanks Akit. So I'd just need to 'tag on' when I board the VTA. There is no need to 'tag off'.

Akit said...

That's correct, VTA runs on a flat fare system, so tagging-on is only required.