Denver RTD, SamTrans, Ozark Regional Transit to implement new fare structures in 2024

Dec. 28, 2023
The changes to fare structures by the three agencies will help make paying for public transit simpler and more accessible.

New fare options will be coming to the Denver Regional Transportation District (RTD), San Mateo County Transit District (SamTrans) and Ozark Regional Transit (ORT) in 2024. 

Denver RTD 

Denver RTD will implement a new systemwide fare structure Jan. 1, 2024, marking the first time the agency has lowered fares for all Denver RTD services. The change is a result of a yearlong fare study and equity analysis aimed at creating a fare structure that is more equitable, affordable and simple. The updated fare structure was adopted by RTD’s Board of Directors in July

Denver RTD’s new fare structure includes: 

Standard fare: 

  • $2.75 for a Three-Hour Pass (no airport) 
  • $5.50 for a Day Pass (no airport) 
  • $10 for an Airport Day Pass (good for travel across the system including to/from the airport) 
  • $88 for a Monthly Pass (includes airport) 

Discount fare: 

  • $1.35 for a Three-Hour Pass 
  • $2.70 for a Day Pass 
  • $27 for a Monthly Pass 
  • All Discount fare products include travel to/from the airport 
  • Customers who qualify for Discount fare are seniors 65 and older, individuals with disabilities, Medicare recipients and individuals enrolled in LiVE, RTD's income-based fare discount program 


  • $4.50 for one-way standard fares 
  • The regional fare is being eliminated 
  • $19 for one-way to the airport 
  • $27 for six-ride ticket books 
  • In March, the 50 percent LiVE discount will become available to Access-a-Ride customers 

LiVE program 

  • LiVE participants’ discounts increase to 50 percent 


The SamTrans Board of Directors approved new SamTrans fare policies at its December meeting. The changes are designed to simplify the fare structure, add new options and benefits for riders and, in many cases, reduce the amount paid by passengers.  

Features of the new fare policies include:  

  • Express fares will be lowered to match those of local fares.  

Enacted upon the launch of the updated Clipper payment system (estimated for fall 2024):  

  • Open payment will be available, meaning customers can pay fares using contactless credit and debit cards.    
  • SamTrans will provide fare capping, which limits the amount riders pay on a daily and monthly basis.  
  • Customers can get transfer discounts of up to $2.50 when riding other participating Bay Area transit systems.  
  • SamTrans mobile app fares move to Clipper app.  

SamTrans reports public feedback played a big role in the decision-making process for the new fare structures. A presentation was made to the SamTrans Citizens Advisory Committee on Oct. 25, a community meeting was held on Oct. 30 and additional public input was received at the board meetings on Nov. 1 and Dec. 6.  

“Members of the public in San Mateo County played a valuable role in our final recommendations to the board,” said SamTrans Fare Program Operations Manager Bruce Thompson. “We always appreciate public input and, in this case, it influenced what changes we brought forward.”  

 A Title VI fare-equity analysis was also completed to ensure the new fare policies do not discriminate based on race, color or national origin. In addition, the Federal Transit Administration requires transit agencies to analyze how fare changes will impact minority and low-income populations. 


Recently approved by the ORT Board of Directors, on-demand transit fares will be $1.25. The starting date has yet to be confirmed. The modest adjustment aims to support the operational needs of the service while maintaining affordability for passengers. ORT will release ADA-fare implementation changes when more information is available. 

About the Author

Brandon Lewis | Associate Editor

Brandon Lewis is a recent graduate of Kent State University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lewis is a former freelance editorial assistant at Vehicle Service in Endeavor Business Media’s Vehicle Repair Group. Lewis brings his knowledge of web managing, copyediting and SEO practices to Mass Transit Magazine as an associate editor.