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Metrolinx: Presto Fare Card

W. K. Lis

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K here's one gripe with the Presto card. So shuffling along between people tapping, you tap your card but weren't sure if it tapped or not. Loud busy vehicle, crowded, did I hear my one beep or not, or wasn't watching the screen closely. So tap again to be sure, says "declined". Shouldn't it say "fare paid", or flash green. Why red and declined if it's been paid and has been accepted. Can understand pass-backs, so just have a yellow screen or something that says 'fare already paid'.

Also they gotta fix the colour of cards for child Presto. It's hitting the fan and more are catching on. What better way to evade fares than to use an identical looking card everyone else is using, tap like everyone else, and legitimately "pay" your fare with the bells and whistles telling everyone that it's been paid. Gotta have a different colour card.

Maybe for kids, a smaller size PRESTO card. For students, one designed to look like a small chalkboard. For seniors, a cane. (Kidding. Actually, one with larger fonts for the fine print on back.)
 

Leo_Chan

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Maybe for kids, a smaller size PRESTO card. For students, one designed to look like a small chalkboard. For seniors, a cane. (Kidding. Actually, one with larger fonts for the fine print on back.)
Physical difference in cards for each fare type isn’t a good idea, as they’re reusable to be upgraded (downgraded tbh) to a different type . However, just having unique sounds for each fare type should be easily doable with a minor software update pushed to all readers with the new sound file(s). But knowing how convoluted Presto is, it’ll probably bring reliability down for months.
 

Steve X

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There are some interesting individuals riding the TTC. Publicly identifying a child travelling alone could put them in danger especially if someone is waiting for them to take a specific bus.
In the daytime, I don't think it's a big deal. Kids do that all the time to/from school. Operators are trained to suspect something unusual. Like a kid getting on the bus along at midnight or getting off at places kids don't usually go. If someone is tailing kids, TTC would only be partially part of the problem.

Physical difference in cards for each fare type isn’t a good idea, as they’re reusable to be upgraded (downgraded tbh) to a different type . However, just having unique sounds for each fare type should be easily doable with a minor software update pushed to all readers with the new sound file(s). But knowing how convoluted Presto is, it’ll probably bring reliability down for months.
Who knows, it might just fill up the system memory with multiple sound files and cause a huge slowdown. This is beyond ridiculous. TTC/ML/Presto aren't pioneering smart fare fare technology in the 90s. They must all been living under a rock for the last 20 years.
 

thettctransitfanatic

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I hope no disagrees but while kids riding free has proven to be an expense, it is worth it, especially for low income families and schools. I think that there just needs to be more enforcement surrounding the "Kids Presto Card" scam
 

nfitz

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I hope no disagrees but while kids riding free has proven to be an expense, it is worth it ...
How has it proven to be an expense? The revenue was always minimal - less than $6 million a year - and that's gross, and doesn't include the cost of printing the tickets, distributing it to over 1,000 retailers, payments to retailers, and counting the tickets, etc.

The recent GO pilot showed that revenue increased, because of the extra adult rides that were generated. I don't think TTC has even estimated that.

TTC has estimated that children's rides are up over 235% from 2014 to 2018 (and still up over 220% if you ignore the small fraction of Children's rides that included Presto. If they generated one additional adult ride for every new children's rides, TTC would have actually made money by eliminating children's fares.
 

thettctransitfanatic

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How has it proven to be an expense? The revenue was always minimal - less than $6 million a year - and that's gross, and doesn't include the cost of printing the tickets, distributing it to over 1,000 retailers, payments to retailers, and counting the tickets, etc.

The recent GO pilot showed that revenue increased, because of the extra adult rides that were generated. I don't think TTC has even estimated that.

TTC has estimated that children's rides are up over 235% from 2014 to 2018 (and still up over 220% if you ignore the small fraction of Children's rides that included Presto. If they generated one additional adult ride for every new children's rides, TTC would have actually made money by eliminating children's fares.

PCs just announced today that GO will free for all kids 12 and under as well, but I'm scaled off topic.,
 

WillTo

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At Eglinton South entrance there used to be a crash fare collector next to the presto gates in a space of open fence. So anytime it was unstaffed it was wide open for anyone that wanted to sneak in. More recently they closed off the fence. There was still a crash collector but all the gate gates close. I was confused.

I just chatted with the collector and he said he is to open the gate from the inside (using his foot) when someone wants to pay with cash or ticket. Facepalm
 

EastYorkTTCFan

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I just finished watching the TTC board meeting and some interesting points were brought up like for example how credit card companies and banks have things in place for fraudulent activity, what does Metrolink have in place for this as they are the owner of the Presto card. For example if someone usees a child card that is clearly not one the TTC can't confiscate it like they could if someone used a post secondary school metropass or a student one if they couldn't provide proof of enrollment in either a high school or a college or university.
 

amnesiajune

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However, just having unique sounds for each fare type should be easily doable with a minor software update pushed to all readers with the new sound file(s).

On the TTC they already have unique sounds for each type of fare, other than low-income fares. But at the end of the day there's not much stopping people if their card makes the child sound. It isn't an operator or collector's job to do stop people who refuse to pay the right fare, so they're not gonna do much other than say "you can't do that".
 

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