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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

UC*Metro Improving Incrementally

The UC*Metro program has seen a number of changes since its introduction in 2007. Unfortunately, most of these have made the program more difficult to use or more expensive for riders. However, one upcoming change will make the program a little simpler.

Starting in Spring Quarter 2010, Metro will print the photo and name of the purchaser directly onto new fare cards. This means that riders will no longer have to show a separate UC ID card in addition to their UC*Metro fare card when boarding. Spring Quarter cards are available for purchase starting today. There is no need to have new photos taken, as existing UC ID photos will be used.

When the program was introduced in 2007, UC*Metro provided all University of Cincinnati students with free rides on any Metro route by simply showing their UC ID. Currently, the program costs $40/quarter for students ($120/quarter for employees) plus 25 cents or more per ride, depending on the route.

If you’re a University of Cincinnati student, faculty or staff member, is using UC*Metro a good deal for you? Or does the complexity and per-ride cost make it not worth your time?


5chw4r7z said...

Its a pain, but I really really hate driving. I mean, when you drive to work what are you doing?
You're driving!
Man does that suck.
After the swipe the card, drop a quarter, show the ID shuffle I sit down and txt, twitter, facebook and read my email.
Way more enjoyable than driving.

RadioCarla said...

I really wish we could get an agreement like this with Metro for our Cincinnati State students and staff. With over 11K students this term, parking is at a real premium. A program like this would really encourage folks to take the bus instead.

Randy Simes said...


It would be great to see this program expand from where it is currently. Last year Northern Kentucky University worked out an agreement with TANK which then expanded to Metro I think.

Cincinnati State seems to be another great opportunity given the large student population and its central location in the heart of the region. At UC, my understanding is that the UC*Metro deal was championed by Student Government, so it may be something that Cincinnati State's student government needs to pick up and run with.

Leiflet said...

My Cincinnati commute vs. my San Francisco commute (2006):

Cincinnati: walk 2 blocks, take bus for 25 minutes. Pay 25 cents (plus $40 for 3 months). Twenty-five minutes to cover 2 miles.

San Francisco: bike 15 minutes, take Bart train for San Francisco ($3.75) for 40 minutes, walk for 25 minutes. One hour and 30 minutes to cover 2.5 miles.

I certainly have gripes with parts of Cincinnati, but i am totally a fan of the Metro.

matt said...

The change situation is a little ridiculous. I mean, we're stepping down from this quarter's 3 items, but keep in mind that was a quick escalation from "show an ID". While still many less quarters are involved vs. a regular bus fare, I also would rather just pay up front if I am getting a 3 month pass, rather than running through rolls of quarters. I will also jump on the "glad I'm not driving" band-wagon, or bus-wagon as it were.

Starbuck3733T said...

The per-ride cost thing totally kills it for me, plus I was paying off that kid in the alley... guess I can't do that anymore.

Jake said...

this is still a raw deal compares with monthly passes in New York, which are $89 a month and $44.50 discounted. You'd need three to cover a quarter, meaning even at the reduced fare, you're forking over $133.50.

This ID/quarter shuffle is new since I went to UC, and I'm lost as to what the purpose is.

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