REGION — Public transit riders will be able to enjoy free rides on MTS and NCTD routes on Oct. 5, which the agencies are declaring as Free Ride Day.
All rides will be free on MTS and NTCD services for Free Ride Day, including the Trolley, COASTER, SPRINTER and fixed-route buses. Passengers will not need a PRONTO card or valid fare for either system and MTS and NCTD services will operate on a normal weekday schedule.
Free Ride Day coincides with California’s Clean Air Day, which is aimed at reducing emissions and improving air quality across the state, and Rideshare Week, which encourages ridesharing between Oct. 3-7.
“As we see MTS ridership rebound following the pandemic, we hope Free Ride Day is an opportunity for more people to give transit a try,” said Nathan Fletcher, MTS Board Chair and chair of the San Diego County Board of Supervisors. “Not only do we want riders to see how transit can benefit them personally, but on Free Ride Day, San Diegans have the opportunity to join the clean air movement across the state of California. Taking transit is one of the most impactful ways individuals can help combat climate change.”
The two agencies have held an annual Free Ride Day since 2018, as well as a Free Ride month last year. According to a news release, Free Ride Day events have led to as much as a 30% ridership increase on local transit.
“We’re fortunate in our region to have public transit systems that access so much of the county,” said Jewel Edson, NCTD Board Chair and Solana Beach City Councilmember. “By offering free rides on Oct. 5, we hope folks will leave their cars at home for the day and try transit. It’s important for our community and for our air quality that we embrace transit and see how it can fit into our daily commute.”