Santa Rosa has introduced a new type of bus pass good for 24 hours in a bid to make it more convenient and cheaper to take multiple bus trips around the city.
Previously, CityBus offered only one-way fares of $1.50 for adults or $50 passes valid for a month, with discounts for seniors.
The new 24-hour passes, which went on sale Monday, cost $4 for adults, $3 for youth age 5 to 18 and $2 for half-fare riders, including seniors and the disabled. The pass allows unlimited rides on the city's bus system.
Anyone who plans to take more than two trips in a 24-hour period would find the new pass economical, said Joy Gipson, CityBus marketing and outreach coordinator. But convenience is likely to be just as big a draw as price, she said.
One-way riders can make up to two transfers for free within 90 minutes, but that often doesn't work for people's schedules. The new passes eliminate the need for transfers.
"It's an option for people who are going to run several errands in a day and don't want to be worried about missing a bus," Gipson said.
The pass is made possible by the electronic fare boxes installed in the city's fleet earlier this year.
"We're just kind of dipping our toes in what the possibilities are," Gipson said.
Some drivers already are reporting monthly pass holders opting instead for the day-pass, she said.
It remains to be seen if the new passes will increase ridership enough to offset the drop in revenue from the lower prices, she said.
"We'll just have to track it and see how it shakes out," Gipson said.
(You can reach Staff Writer Kevin McCallum at 521-5207 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter@citybeater)