Beginning Saturday, October 1st, those ages 18 and younger can ride Yakima Transit for free thanks to action last month by the Yakima City Council and a grant from the state of Washington.
Yakima Transit will offer fare-free service to those ages 18 and younger on all forms of Yakima Transit services. These include Yakima Transit fixed route bus service, Yakima-Ellensburg Commuter and Dial-A-Ride paratransit service (for those qualified to use Dial-A-Ride).
To utilize the fare-free service, those ages 18 and younger are required to carry proof of eligibility in the form of a current school photo ID card, a valid government-issued ID card, a birth certificate, or, preferably, a free Yakima Transit Youth Card.
Yakima Transit Youth Cards can be obtained for no charge at the Yakima Transit Center located at S. 4th Street and Walnut Avenue or the City of Yakima Public Works facility, 2301 Fruitvale Boulevard, during regular business hours. Proof of eligibility in the form of a birth certificate or a valid government-issued I.D. card must be provided in order to receive a Yakima Transit Youth Card.
Youth passengers are encouraged to obtain their Yakima Transit Youth Cards as soon as possible at one of the above locations.
Children under 6 will continue to ride Yakima Transit services for free with a fare-paying adult and do not need proof of eligibility.
On August 16th, the Yakima City Council approved an ordinance amending Yakima Transit’s rates to allow for the fare-free service. Fare-free transit is made possible through the Move Ahead Washington transportation package. The program, approved by the Washington State Legislature in March 2022, provides grant funding to fully replace lost youth fare revenue for transit agencies, such as Yakima Transit, which adopt fare-free policies for individuals 18 years of age and younger.
“We appreciate this opportunity to provide free transit service for young people in our community,” said Yakima Transit Manager Alvie Maxey.