Caltrain Raising Rates—Again

Rates increase July 1.


Wherever you’re going on the Peninsula, if you’re planning to take a Caltrain, it’s going to cost more starting July 1.  

Caltrain's Board of Directors approved bumping up the rates for all the zones by a quarter for one-way paper tickets and fifty cents for Day Passes that are bought at the train stations, citing operating costs as the reason for doing so, said Caltrain Spokesperson Christine Dunn.

Ticket prices fund about 44 percent of the total cost of running the trains, according to Dunn. 75 percent of all tickets are bought at the train stations, she said.

This is the 7th time ticket prices have been increased in the past seven years. It will not be the last, Dunn said, unless more people ride the train and use . 

"If at least 50 percent of the one-way tickets are paid for with Clipper by March 1, 2013, then Caltrain will not implement a second increase," she said.

"Otherwise, beginning July 1, 2013, one-way zone fares will increase by 25 cents and Day Pass zone fares will increase by 50 cents," she added. 

You can calculate how much it will cost you to travel by train in advance of your journey by perusing this rate chart. 

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Vanessa Castañeda June 26, 2012 at 05:19 PM
True. Caltrain's spokesperson said the company wants to encourage people to use the Clipper Cards. I've never used one.
Janet Lafleur June 26, 2012 at 08:41 PM
I've used a Clipper Card since April when I started commuting with Caltrain. The way it works on Caltrain is not intuitive. When you "tag on" ou're basically charged for the full fare of the longest ride you can take that day, and then when you "tag off" you're credited back for the difference. Add in zone-based 8-ride and monthly passes and it gets even more confusing, especially if you want to go anywhere outside the zone you bought the passes for. If you go outside your zone, it doesn't charge you a zone upgrade, it charges you a single ride. And I think it still owes me for a few 8-ride passes that I'll never use in time since I bought a monthly pass. Do we really expect everyone to have a PhD to use these darn things? Caltrain, if you want more people to use it, maybe you should make it easier to use. If not that, then at least easier to understand.
commuter June 26, 2012 at 08:58 PM
If you catch buses a lot, it is so much easier to pay with a Clipper Card than to carry exact change all the time. Not as big a deal with Caltrain since they take credit cards, but all those credit card fees on small purchases are probably expensive for Caltrain.
David Edmondson June 26, 2012 at 09:13 PM
And you can buy them online. Totally worthwhile.
Vanessa Castañeda June 26, 2012 at 11:54 PM
I know a few PhD students who forget to tag off sometimes.


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