Posted August 21, 2012

NEWS RELEASE from Metropolitan Transportation Commission, 8/20/2012

Media Contacts: Randy Rentschler 510.817.5780 or John Goodwin 510.817.5862

$3 Acquisition Fee for New Adult Clipper Cards Takes Effect Saturday, September 1

Fee Will Cover Costs, Encourage Long-Term Use

Beginning September 1, 2012, new Adult Clipper cards will cost $3. As an incentive for customers to try automatically reloading their Clipper cards, Clipper will waive the $3 fee for customers who sign up for the Autoload feature when they order a card online at clippercard.com.

The new $3 fee is only for new Adult Clipper cards; Youth and Senior Clipper cards remain free, and the fee for a Regional Transit Connection Clipper card, for transit riders with qualifying disabilities, remains $3.

Clipper is the reloadable card that allows Bay Area transit riders to load cash value and monthly passes over the phone, online at clippercard.com and at a variety of retail locations, including most Bay Area Walgreens stores. Clipper is accepted on San Francisco Muni, BART, Golden Gate Transit and Ferry, Caltrain, SamTrans, AC Transit, Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), Dumbarton Express, and San Francisco Bay Ferry (currently only on the South San Francisco/East Bay route).

Clipper cards have been free since the transit card program launched in June 2010. Clipper provided the cards free of charge over the past two years as an incentive for the hundreds of thousands of Bay Area transit riders to try the card. The incentive appears to have been successful, with more than 15 million trips taken using Clipper cards in July 2012. On an average weekday, transit riders take more than 600,000 trips using the card.

“We want to encourage people to keep their cards, reload them automatically and use them for a long time, rather than throwing them out and getting new ones,” said Carol Kuester, director of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission’s Electronic Payment section. “Charging a fee for the card also helps us be better stewards of public funds.”

A question-and-answer page about the $3 Clipper card acquisition fee: http://www.mtc.ca.gov/news/press_releases/rel575.htm.

Clipper offers convenience by keeping track of passes, discount tickets, ride books and cash value that customers load onto it, while automatically applying all applicable fares, discounts and transfer rules. Since Clipper cards can be registered for added security, customers whose cards are lost or stolen can have their card replaced and balance restored for a fee. Clipper customers with questions about their Clipper account can log in to their accounts at clippercard.com or call Clipper Customer Service at 877-878-8883 or TDD/TYY: 711 or 800-735-2929.

Clipper is a project of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area.

###