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Metropass for Employers

Overview

Man in a bus

No matter what business you're in, you know that giving employees options for getting to work is good for business. Driving alone puts a strain on nerves, the roads and our air! When you offer commuter benefits at your company, employees save money and arrive at work relaxed. You'll benefit by attracting and retaining great employees.

Transit pass programs have no cost to the employer unless you choose to subsidize them. More than 80 percent of participating companies subsidize transit benefits because they earn tax credits. Contact Metro Transit today to figure out the best option for your company and employees. We will answer your questions and connect you with your local Transportation Management Organization (TMO) to assist you every step of the way.

Metropass

With Metropass, your participants gain access to deeply discounted, unlimited-ride transit passes. This flexible program allows you to pay for only those passes that are in use on a monthly basis. Metropass is available to organizations with five or more participants. Learn more.

Go-To Cards via metrotransit.org/store and My Fare Card List

Your organization can use convenient online tools to distribute and add value to Go-To Cards. Find out more about adding stored value, stored rides and multi-day passes to Go-To Cards. Learn about ordering options and administrative tools such as My Fare Card List.

Pre-paid fares via order form

If the Metropass program or Go-To Cards don't meet your needs, consider the fare options below. Learn more about receiving a customer number and ordering these fare products.

Go-To lite Cards
Go-To lite Cards work similarly to Go-To Cards, but cannot be refilled or registered for balance protection. They are designed for customers who will be using transit for a limited time period. Learn more.

One-Ride Tickets
One-Ride Tickets are valid for any ride, up to a value of $3.00. You can purchase them for infrequent riders or those who would like to try riding transit before committing to a Go-To Card. One-Ride Tickets are available at no cost to Metropass organizations that give them to potential passholders.

Tokens
Tokens are valid for bus and train fares. More than one token is required for rides on express buses during rush hours and for Northstar service. Tokens are available to those with a wholesale account and must be distributed to transit riders at no cost.


For Metropass administrators

More than 300 organizations provide their employees access to discounted, unlimited-ride transit passes (valid for $3.25 fare*) with this transit pass program. Metropass is available to groups with 5 participants; each pass costs $83 per month.Metropass

You can pass the cost of the pass on to participants, or – like 50 percent of existing organizations in the program – you can subsidize a portion of the cost, and earn tax credits. Our flexible program allows easy monthly payments.

Note: If your organization has fewer than 5 riders, consider purchasing Go-To Cards for your participants, allowing employees to purchase transit passes on a pre-tax basis. More details can be found here.

*If participants ride any route with a fare above $3.25, stored value is required. Add value here or through the administrator site.

How it works for the Metropass user

Validate the ride

Users must validate each ride by touching their Metropass to a card reader every time they board a bus or train. Without validation, the ride is not counted and Metro Transit Police cannot verify that the pass is active and valid. Metro Transit reserves the right to deactivate Metropasses from those who do not comply with fare policy.

Take proper care of the pass

For details on how the card works and how to take care of it, read the User's Guide. To request printed copies of the User's Guide, email metropass@metrotransit.org.

How it works for the Metropass administrator

Each participating organization assigns a Metropass administrator. This person manages the program through an online administrator site, using it to track current passes and participants, temporarily suspend or cancel passes, issue replacement passes and manage billing information.

If you already participate in the Metropass program, use these resources:

An organization must agree to these terms:

  • Commit to participate for one year in the program; after one year, the organization is on a monthly billing cycle with no annual commitment
  • Promote the program to eligible participants
  • Pay for a minimum of 5 riders/passes per month

Once an agreement is signed with the Metropolitan Council, enrollment begins!

  • Set up an account on the secure administrator site (an invitation will be emailed upon request)
  • Submit the names of your new participants on the administrator site
  • Schedule an orientation session with the outreach specialist in your area

Distribute Metropasses and remind participants of the terms of use.

  • Participants must validate every ride by touching their pass to the reader located on the bus and at METRO and Northstar stations. Failure to do so may result in card deactivation or revocation.
  • Metropass is non-transferable; it cannot be used by anyone other than the individual named on the pass
  • Metropass must be signed
  • A valid ID must be presented upon request by Metro Transit Police
     

Ordering, canceling, replacing & suspending passes

All administrator functions described below can be completed on the administrator site. Please refer to the calendar in the administrative portal to determine a delivery date for new Metropasses.

Ordering passes
To request passes for new participants, submit their names and optional unique identification numbers under the Enroll Participant(s) option in the administrator site.

Canceling passes
If a participant leaves the organization or chooses to cancel his or her pass, promptly deactivate it to avoid paying for an additional month.

Replacing lost, stolen or defective passes
If a participant's card is lost or stolen, the administrator should deactivate the old pass and request a replacement. A $5 fee will be charged for a replacement unless the pass is deemed defective (it has no apparent physical damage and cannot be read properly by validators). Defective passes must be returned to Metro Transit for verification. A pass can be replaced up to two times per year for each participant.

Suspending passes
A participant is allowed to temporarily suspend his or her pass for one to three months. There is no replacement fee since a new pass is not produced.

Payment information

Prior to the 25th of each month, the administrator downloads an "active pass" report using the administrator site. The administrator verifies the list of active passes and cancels passes as necessary. After the last day of the billing cycle, Metro Transit views the "active pass" report and sends a bill for those passes plus any adjustments made due to replacements.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do users need to validate their rides on buses and on rail station platforms before boarding?
Yes, all users must validate their rides by touching their Metropass to a card reader every time they board a bus or train. Without validation, the ride is not counted and Metro Transit Police cannot verify that the pass is active and valid. Metro Transit reserves the right to deactivate cards from users who do not comply with fare policy.

How do I add stored value to a Metropass?
There are two ways. If your organization is managing the stored value and allows the participant to use pre-tax dollars for stored value purchases, use the administrator site to add value. Otherwise, individual users can add stored value to a Metropass online, by phone at 612-373-3333 or at select Go-To Card retail outlets.

What happens after we complete our first year in the program?
Your group has the option of leaving the program after a 30-day written notice.

Will Metro Transit contact us to verify the number of active passes for each month’s billing?
No, use the administrator site or contact us before the 25th of each month to make any changes. Otherwise, Metro Transit will assume that the number of active passes in the system is accurate and billable.

How often does Metro Transit produce and mail passes?
Metropasses are now processed and mailed almost each week throughout the month. Some restrictions apply and no mailing is done the week before the 25th day, to give our organizations time to reconcile their monthly billing. Orders received by Wednesday will be processed and mailed on that same Friday. Those riders awaiting a replacement pass should be issued a Temporary Metropass to use until their replacement pass arrives.

Will temporary passes on Go-To Cards be available?
Yes, they will be available for participants waiting to receive a replacement pass. Please contact Lisa Erle or Dustin Crescini if one of your participants rides the Northstar Line and has requested a replacement card; stored value can be added to a temporary Go-To Card. 

Can participants choose which months they want to participate?
A Metropass participant can temporarily deactivate a pass for one to three consecutive months at no cost. After three months, the pass will be permanently deactivated. A replacement pass will need to be requested if the participant wishes to re-enroll in to the program.


For transit benefit administrators

Affordable Benefits for Organizations of Any Size

Providing transit benefits saves your employees or members money (click here to learn about tax benefits or credits) while helping them reach their destinations. If the Metropass, College Pass or Student Pass programs don’t meet your needs, there are other options.

Each option is tailored to a type of organization or participant. Many organizations use multiple programs (for example, Metropass along with My Fare Card List) to meet the needs of those who ride transit.

My Fare Card List at metrotransit.org
> Pre-paid fares via order form

Organization Requirements My Fare Card List Pre-paid fares
  Metro Transit online store order form
No minimum purchase required X  
$200 minimum purchase per order   X
Stable employee or client base* X  
Variable employee or client base**   X
Participants prefer disposable or single use pre-paid fares such as Go-To lite Cards and tokens   X
Participants prefer Go-To Cards; administrators don’t distribute cards every month X  
Administrator must pay by credit card (invoice option available for large-volume online store customers and all order form customers) X  

*Your organization plans to recharge each participant's card at least three times and/or expects them to ride for at least three months.

**For those who may ride for fewer than three months.
 

Available Fare Products My Fare Card List Pre-paid fares
  Metro Transit online store order form
Go-To Cards: stored value, stored rides, multi-day passes X  
Go-To lite Cards: stored rides (adults and students), multi-day passes X (10 Rides for adults only) X
SuperSavers: Mobility 31-Day Pass, $59 31-Day Pass, $10 Stored Value Card   X
Tokens   X
One-ride tickets   X
Metro Mobility ticket booklets X X

My Fare Card List at metrotransit.org/store (credit card)

With an account, purchase and manage Go-To Cards for eligible participants. A Go-To Card is the most flexible way to pay fares and allows groups to purchase a variety of fares (stored value, stored rides, multi-day passes, etc.). An administrator can manage up to 100 Go-To Cards using My Fare Card List and submit payment in a single transaction. The transit user benefits from discounted rides and from paying with pre-tax dollars, if applicable. Your organization benefits from offering a great transit benefit without the hassle of distributing passes each month.

Managing Go-To Cards with My Fare Card List

  1. Create a account
  2. Place an initial Go-To Card order in the Online Store
  3. Once you receive the cards, create a “My Fare Card List” within the store
  4. Distribute Go-To Cards to participants and be sure to record a name or other identifier in the Nickname field
  5. If necessary, you can add stored value, stored rides or multi-day passes to Go-To Cards with a credit card in one easy transaction
     

New! Be invoiced for metrotransit.org/store orders!

If your organization purchases fares for a large number of customers (100+) and you would prefer not to pay by credit card, you may be eligible to receive an invoice from Metro Transit for each online order and not settle by credit card at the time of purchase.

To determine if your organization would be eligible, please contact us today.


Pre-paid fares via order form

If your organization does not qualify for any pass programs and managing Go-To Cards online does not meet your needs, ordering fares via this order form is likely the best option – its flexibility is preferred by many social service agencies and non-profits with different clients each month. Please contact us to set up a wholesale account and receive a customer number that allows your organization to purchase pre-paid fares. If your organization distributes fare to homeless individuals or those seeking employment, you may be eligible for discounts.

> Already have a customer number with Metro Transit? Access order form here


Learn More

If your organization is interested in offering transit benefits, find out more by contacting the local outreach specialist or Metro Transit today.