Bus Basics: How to ride
Information from the Phoenix Public Transit Department
It's not the number one reason why people don't ride the bus, but "I don't know how" is a big concern. What most people mean is they want to avoid looking foolish because they are not familiar with bus basics. It's a concern, but one that can be easily remedied.
Plan. That's the best tip for taking your first bus ride. Transit customer service representatives are ready to help plan your trip and locating the nearest bus stop to you. They'll help you with the schedule and tell you what it means to transfer buses and how to do it. On your trip, bus operators and fellow passengers can help but you can best help yourself by being prepared.
Follow these tips on how to board and deboard the bus:
Have exact fare (cash or pass) ready to go. It quickens the boarding process for everyone. The one-way cost is $2.00 for local bus and an All-Day pass is $4.00. The one-way cost is $3.25 for RAPID and Express buses and $6.50 for an All-Day pass. Many employers offer discount bus passes or you can buy a monthly pass at one of the transit centers.
The fare box is located at the front of the bus. It has slots for bills, coins, tokens, and tickets. For bus passes, slide through the reader located at the top of the farebox.
Take a seat. Steady yourself if you stand by holding on to a strap, rail, or the back of a seat.
Automated announcements or the bus operator call out streets and intersecting bus routes. Pull the cord hanging by the window when you hear your stop or route announced; that will tell the bus operator you want a stop.
When you can, exit through the back door. There is a button on the handrail near the back door on most buses. When that lights up, press it and the door will open. On other buses, passengers need to push the door's bars for it to open.
When you transfer to another bus, make sure you get on one going in the correct direction. As you board, insert your pass in the farebox and keep it with you throughout the day.
You can learn about schedules and bus stop locations by calling a Valley Metro customer service representative at (602) 253-5000 or by going on-line at Valley Metro. A Transit Book with route maps and schedules is also available on buses, at transit centers and park-and-rides, and at many municipal offices and libraries.