TTC rolls out new campaign reminding riders of importance of paying fares

March 22, 2024
The TTC’s campaign comes as a new internal audit report shows fare evasion on the TTC is at an all-time high with the agency losing approximately C$124 million in 2023.

The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) is rolling out a new campaign to remind riders about the importance of paying fares and warning those who steal rides that they are subject to fines. 

“The TTC is not free and even with a significant city of Toronto operating subsidy, we rely heavily on fares. They fund safe, reliable service for hundreds of millions of customers every year and they allow us to keep those fares reasonably priced,” said TTC CEO Rick Leary. “We need those who willfully deprive our system of funds to understand that their actions have consequences, including less service for others and a fine for themselves.” 

The TTC’s campaign comes as a new internal audit report shows fare evasion on the TTC is at an all-time high. The TTC’s auditors found that in 2023, fare evasion was at almost 12 percent and cost the system close to C$124 million (US$91.3 million) in lost revenue. The agency says those numbers are almost double the 2018 review that placed evasion at around six percent and cost the TTC approximately C$60 (US$44.2 million) to C$70 million (US$51.6 million) a year. 

During the past several months, the TTC has increased staff for both fare compliance and improved safety and security, including hiring fare inspectors, special constables and 130 new stations staff who will be present at secondary entrances to address the issue of gate crashing and assist customers as needed. Transit Fare Inspectors will be patrolling the downtown streetcar network and transfer points in stations and there will be an increased presence of supervisors and Special Constables on the bus network. 

The TTC also introduced a new fare collection process that ensures customers are treated with respect and provides enhanced accountability, including the creation of a complaints office.  

“We have a team of dedicated, well-trained and compassionate individuals on staff who will treat our customers fairly,” Leary said. “I would hope that they are shown the same respect while they do their jobs.”   

TTC staff will report back to the TTC Board during its May meeting on responsive enforcement plans and the impact the new measures have had since the auditor’s study. 

More details on the new TTC fare collection process, as well as the audit study, can be found here