GO Transit, TTC users to get co-fare discounts

Click to play video 'GO Transit users will see half-price discount on TTC fares' GO Transit users will see half-price discount on TTC fares
Riders who use the TTC , GO Transit and UP Express will get a reduction in their overall commute cost thanks to an agreement between the provincial government and Metrolinx. Shallima Maharaj reports.

Fare discounts are on the way for commuters who transfer between the TTC and GO Transit.

The agreement between the Ontario government and Toronto’s local transportation authority, which will be formally announced on Friday, means GO riders transferring to the TTC will get $1.50 off their TTC fare.

Going the other way, TTC riders transferring to GO or UP Express will get $1.50 off their fare.

A spokesman for Toronto Mayor John Tory said the Ontario government has agreed to subsidize co-fares in an effort to make public transit more affordable.

READ MORE: Fare hikes on the way for GO Transit, UP Express users

“We have never had an agreement on fares before. This is a good step in the right direction towards SmartTrack. This is the first step in fare integration, not the only step and not the end of the story, but a great beginning,” spokesman Don Peat said in a statement to Global News.

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“The TTC’s budget is protected and will not be negatively impacted. Ultimately, this agreement will mean if you ride a mix of the TTC, UP Express and GO to get around Toronto, transit will now be less expensive.”

The current adult fare for the TTC with a Presto card is $3 and the cost to travel on GO Transit varies depending on distance travelled.

Metrolinx, the provincial agency which operates GO Transit, currently has co-fare agreements in place with 12 transit agencies across Ontario.

READ MORE: TTC warns fare cheats face fines of up to $425 for tripping PRESTO-enabled gate sensors

“I can say co-fares encourage people to take transit and are very popular with commuters,” Metrolinx spokesperson Anne Marie Aikins said.

“We recommended the strategy for TTC to be used for GO & UP last month in our fare integration report to the board.”

Aikins said a quarter of the 300,000 people who use the UP Express every month are commuters traveling between Weston Station and Union Station.

The co-fare discount is expected to take effect by the end of the year.