Previously, we announced that our BruinGO! transit co-pay is now available on a TAP card for $0.70 per ride (or $0.80 without TAP) on Santa Monica Big Blue Bus (BBB) and Culver CityBus (CCB). We have heard feedback particularly from students about this change, so we wanted to provide some insight as to why this was made.
The new co-pays do represent an increase from the previous rate of $0.50 per ride. This is due to BBB increasing their fees to UCLA almost two years ago, and when the contract was signed it was too late to increase fares for the 2017-18 academic year, so UCLA Transportation absorbed the additional cost for the time being. We then delayed the increase to coincide with the co-pay being available on TAP, so riders could pay without having to carry exact change or multiple coins.
UCLA Transportation still heavily subsidizes the standard prices for single bus rides and passes. When paying with TAP, the $0.70 co-pay represents a 44% discount from the standard fare of $1.25 per ride on BBB, and 30% off the standard fare of $1.00 per ride on CCB. Those who are frequent users of BBB and/or CCB should consider the BruinGO! Flash Pass, which provides unlimited rides on Big Blue Bus and Culver CityBus, and costs only $45 per quarter for students ($55 for employees). Averaging out to $15 per month for students, that's a significant savings over the standard $50 BBB 30-day pass. Eligible students and employees can even try the BruinGO! Flash Pass free for a quarter with the Bruin Commuter Transit Benefit.
We understand the co-pay increase caught many by surprise when it went into effect on July 1. We will do better to communicate these changes in the future as we strive to offer cost-effective commuting options for the UCLA community.