Soon, kids who are age 12 and under will be able to ride Barrie Transit for free, while seniors who are age 65 and above will be able to use the bus at no cost on Thursdays.
The changes are scheduled to go into effect on Nov. 1, according to the City of Barrie.
“We’re very excited to offer free transit for children 12 and under,” said Brent Forsyth, Barrie’s transit director, in a statement.
“We want to get more young people on the bus — if they get comfortable with the service, they are more likely to become lifelong transit users.”
READ MORE: Barrie Transit free for seniors in June
Forsyth added that the city needs to increase some fares to offset the rising costs of operation.
According to the city, students ages 13 to 18 and adults ages 19 to 64 will see an increase of 25 cents on their cash fares. For a 10-ride card, students will see an increase of $1.50, while adults will see an increase of $2.
For a monthly pass, students will see an increase of 75 cents, while adults will see an increase of $1. Seniors, on the other hand, will see a $4 decrease in their monthly pass.
Also starting Nov. 1, transfers will be valid for 75 minutes, instead of 60 minutes.
Free transit for children 12 and under was approved by Barrie city council in April as part of the Barrie Transit Fare Strategy. The initiative also includes a small increase to some transit rates.
In June, free transit was offered to seniors for the entire month.
At that time, the city says it consulted with seniors to see if they preferred having an entire month for free or one day a week. According to the city, the answer was one day a week.