Seems like just yesterday when Muni instituted its new 25-cent fare hike for riders who pay cash for a single-trip transfer (in fact, it was less than six months ago!). But the beginning of the SFMTA’s new fiscal year on July 1, 2017 brings yet another fare increase to all riders, no matter how they pay, as the municipal transportation agency announced Friday a set of Muni fare increases that will hike the price of all single-trip fares by 25 cents, and most monthly passes by two or three dollars. That means the cash fare for a Muni transfer will be raised to $2.75, likely presenting the SFMTA with secret financial windfall because so many cash-fare riders will simply say the hell with it and just pay the three dollars even.
“While nobody loves to pay more, Muni fares must keep pace with rising costs and inflation to keep the system working safely and efficiently,” the SFMTA says in their release announcing the fare increase. “To help ensure regular, lower fare increases, fare rates are adjusted by a formula every year under our Automatic Fare Indexing Policy, and approved by the SFMTA Board of Directors as part of the fiscal year budget.”
As mentioned earlier, the new pricing structure a makes a “single-trip” fare cost $2.75 when paying in cash (though many papers transfers can be used for more than one trip). For Clipper Card and MuniMobile app users, fare for a single ride will go up to $2.50. The price of your “both Muni and BART within San Francisco” version of the monthly Fast Pass will go up to $94, whereas the Muni-only Fast Pass will increase to $75. Commence with showing your age and saying “I remember when it only cost ” in the comments below!
While both cash and Clipper fares will increase on Muni, the Clipper fare is still discounted by 25 cents. But is it really a discount? As one commenter rather correctly notes on the SFMTA fare increase page, Clipper fares strictly cover 90 minutes of transfers and that’s it. Paper transfers can often last up to six hours! So the cash fare is sometimes more of a discount, despite the higher price.
Meanwhile over on Caltrain, the Joint Peninsula powers-that-be are also considering a 25-cent fare hike, CBS 5 reports. That fare increase would be 25 cents per zone so a full ride between San Francisco and San Jose would be increased by $1.50. Caltrain is also considering eliminating eight-ride passes and increasing the cost of parking in a Caltrain parking lot to cover their growing budget deficit.
“We’re looking at a $20.7 million shortfall,” Caltrain spokesman Dan Lieberman told CBS 5.
If you’re a Caltrain rider who would like to voice your frustration with (or support of!) the proposed fare increase, the commuter rail line service will have staffed tables at 11 different stations tomorrow, Tuesday, May 23, to gather your feedback. Additionally, the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board will have a public meeting on Thursday, July 6 at 10 a.m. at the Caltrain Administrative Office in San Carlos. You don’t even have to be present at the meeting to speak up, because Caltrain is taking comments online and via email at [email protected]
But as for Muni riders, that 25-cent fare increase is a done deal and going into effect July 1, 2017 regardless of your feelings on whether the fare’s fair.