May 27th, 2024

Transit trips up among seniors since Montreal introduced free fare program, city says

By The Canadian Press on April 27, 2024.

A direction sign to the Metro subway,is seen in Montreal on Tuesday, June 18, 2019. Montreal says public transit trips were up between 15 and 20 per cent among people age 65 and over in the six months after it made the service free for local seniors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson

Montreal says public transit trips were up between 15 and 20 per cent among people age 65 and over in the six months after it made the service free for local seniors.

The program, which took effect on July 1 of last year, offers residents who are 65 or older free fare for transit trips within the city of Montreal and suburbs on Montreal Island.

The six-month results were released in a 2025 budget planning document the city published earlier this week.

Montreal also reports 47 per cent of eligible residents had signed up for the program by the end of 2023.

Among them is 74-year-old Huguette Bergeron, who says she would have been able to afford the regular $97 monthly transit fare but feels the program is helping seniors socialize and take fuller advantage of their city.

Robert Martin says he plans to register for the program when he turns 65 next year, and that as someone who has never owned a car, he expects it will enable him to become more mobile.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 27, 2024.

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