TheDepartment of Planning and Growth Management Transit Division will begin a fare-free pilot program on VanGO starting Monday, Jan. 3, to Thursday, June 30. VanGO riders will be able to board buses without paying a fare. The pilot program is to help those impacted by the pandemic and for older adults and people with disabilities. The program is a way to increase ridership while offering a free fare as a post-pandemic relief.
Most VanGO patrons use the service to get to work and for educational opportunities, and the patrons using the specialized, door-to-door service are disabled and on fixed incomes.The free fares will lessen riders’ financial burden and speed boarding.
TheDepartment of Planning and Growth Management Transit Division will monitor the ridership data and evaluate its options moving forward during this six-month pilot program.
This pilot program is funded with several Federal Transit Administration grants intended to assist public transit agencies in maintaining services while recovering from the losses of farebox revenues. These grants are over a multi-year period, and the elimination of fares will not affect the county budget during this pilot program.
For more information about VanGO, visit www.CharlesCountyMD.gov/services/transportation/vango-public-transportation, or call VanGO at 301-645-0642. The DoubleMap app is available on smartphones, as well as on the computer.
To access online, visit vango.doublemap.com, select your desired routes, and select a stop nearest you to view the estimated time of arrival.