Free Fare Program for COVID-19 Vaccine Appointments

Beginning February 26, 2020, METRO will be providing free local transit rides to and from COVID-19 vaccination appointments in Santa Cruz County


Riders who are interested in using METRO to transport them to and from their COVID-19 vaccination appointments must let the operator know when boarding the vehicle and show proof of the vaccination appointment. Proof of vaccination appointment includes a photo, printout, or email of the confirmed appointment slot or vaccination card. Free fares for vaccination appointments will be available to all fixed-route and ParaCruz riders. Customers who are eligible and enrolled in METRO’s ParaCruz service will need to specify ahead of time that they are going to and from a vaccination appointment at the time of making the reservation for the free fare to apply.


View the Full Announcment here


Free Fare Program for Legally Blind Riders

We still want to hear from you! Have you tried the Access Pass for Legally Blind Riders and have feedback? Maybe you haven't tried the program but you have some suggestions?  Please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your thoughts.


Beginning November 1, 2019, customers who are legally blind may ride the Santa Cruz METRO fixed-route bus system for free.  To learn more about the program, download the program overview guide at the link below.  To read our full policy on all Discount Fare Options for elderly and disabled passengers, download the full policy from the link below.  This program will allow qualifying customers to travel anywhere METRO's fixed-route buses travel, including on the Highway 17 Express.


Why is the program only available for Legally Blind Riders?

The program was proposed as a way to resolve some concerns raised by visually impaired riders who had difficulty using our ticket vending machines (TVMs).  The concern related to the TVMs is specifically tied to the audio component that reads aloud the verbiage on the screen during the transaction.  This issue only affects visually impaired riders who rely on the audio to purchase a ticket. 


How do I find out if I qualify?

To qualify, you may download the overview guide at the link below.  On the back page you will find a form that can be signed off by your medical provider, or by a member of Santa Cruz METRO staff.  If you would like to be evaluated by Santa Cruz METRO staff, please contact Customer Service at (831) 425-8600 and ask to make an appointment with the Eligibility Coordinator to be verified for the Free Fare Program.


How do I ride for free?

Bus Operators have been instructed to allow customers who are legally blind onboard the bus for free.  Visually impaired customers who do not use mobility assistance, such as a cane or service animal, may be asked by an operator to present a Discount ID or ACCESS Card.  If the customer does not have one, they will be directed to contact Customer Service to get the proper documentation.


Do I have to renew my card?

No.  The ACCESS Card is good for the life of the program.


View the Free Fare Program Overview here

View the Full Policy here