Transit fares determined

Summerland transit riders who buy a transit pass or sheets of ride tickets will save money when bus fares take effect in January.

Summerland transit riders who buy a transit pass or sheets of ride tickets will save money when bus fares take effect in January.

The municipality will charge $2 for a one-way bus ride within Summerland and $4 for a one-way trip to Penticton when fares take effect.

For those who buy tickets in advance, the fare drops slightly. A sheet of 10 tickets for rides within Summerland will cost $18 while a sheet of 10 tickets for trips to and from Penticton will cost $36.

A monthly transit pass will cost $50.

The transit service began operating on Oct. 28. It provides service five days a week to and from Penticton. For the remainder of this year, there is no cost to ride the bus. Beginning in the new year, fares will be introduced.

The proposed fare structure is based on guidelines from B.C. Transit.

The guidelines recommend one cash fare for all riders, with no senior or student discount.

Tickets are priced at 10 for the price of nine to encourage ticket purchases rather than paying cash.

The cost of a monthly pass is suggested at 20 to 30 times the price of a cash fare.

Because Summerland and Penticton run separate transit systems, a recommendation has also been made that Penticton accepts Summerland transfers and that Summerland accepts Penticton transfers.

This was suggested to benefit transit users, but it must first receive approval from the Penticton city council.

“I’m really hopeful Penticton will come on board,” said Mayor Janice Perrino. “This is very much a shared service.”

The fares also mean changes are needed to the Handy Dart service fares.

The cash price of a ride on the Handy Dart system is the same as the cost for a ride on the scheduled bus service. However, there are some differences in the costs. Handy Dart users have not received a discount when buying 10 tickets at a time, but the cost of a monthly transit pass was cheaper than the cost of a pass for the scheduled transit service.