L.A. Metro rolls out new fare capping policies

July 21, 2023
The new policies aim to provide financial relief and drive equity and encourage public transportation adoption in the region.

As part of a new fare-cap policy the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (L.A. Metro) implemented on July 1, customers can now use their TAP card to pay per ride until they hit a daily fare cap of $5 or a seven-day fare cap of $18. Once the one-day and seven-day caps are reached, L.A. Metro riders will be able to use the system for free for the remainder of the day or seven-day period.

Prior to fare capping, riders could buy daily, weekly or monthly passes, some of which required larger purchases upfront. Now, customers can load stored value (cash) onto their TAP cards or TAP mobile app and pay as they go, lessening the economic burden of public transit usage. The more riders using the system, the more they will be able to save.

Fare capping is the latest rider benefit added to the TAP regional contactless fare system, which utilizes Cubic Transportation Systems’ technology. The all-in-one system and fare-capping ability streamlines fare payments for riders, simplifies operations for L.A. Metro and consolidates the number of fare products needed to create a comprehensive rider experience.

TAP links 26 transit agencies across the Los Angeles area and has over 25 million active accounts across the transit network. TAP also offers an integrated mobile traveler app, which allows users to make a fare purchase or use their mobile device to complete their journey across multiple services, such as bus, rail and Metro Micro. It also provides commute information to the region’s riders.

“Cubic’s long-standing partnership with L.A. Metro has been a collaborative effort from the very beginning, focused on bringing simpler journeys and ways to pay – as well as a better overall rider experience – to the people of Los Angeles,” said SVP and GM of Cubic Transportation Systems Matt Newsome. “We are extremely proud to support the new fare capping initiative that will not only provide financial relief but drive equity and encourage public transportation adoption in the region. We applaud L.A. Metro for bringing this new way to pay fares to the public.”

Fare capping arrives at an ideal time in Los Angeles, as the city prepares to host multiple mega events, including the 2026 FIFA World Cup and 2028 Summer Olympics – each anticipated to draw millions of global citizens. Not only will the ability to pay contactless make the visiting rider experience easier – but fare capping will make transit the most affordable and sustainable option for attendees. This will help reduce congestion across the region during these historic, heavily attended events.

“The fare change in support of fare capping was approved by the L.A. Metro Board of Directors last December. Now, L.A. Metro fares are simple, equitable and affordable for customers and they can earn free rides when they use their TAP card or TAP mobile app automatically,” said L.A. Metro Senior Executive Officer David Sutton. “Through our partnership with Cubic, we are continuously improving TAP to meet the demands of LA County residents and visitors. We are also eager to see how this latest innovation will attract more customers to our transit system and incentivize our cash customers to try TAP.”