Starting today, residents of the agglomeration of Montréal aged 65 and over can load their OPUS cards with a Free 65+ All Modes A transit fare.
Starting today, the City of Montréal, in collaboration with the Société de transport de Montréal (STM), is inviting residents of the agglomeration of Montréal aged 65 and over to load their OPUS cards with a Free 65+ All Modes A transit fare. The new fare, which will become valid on July 1st, 2023, will allow seniors to take public transit for free within Zone A (the Island of Montréal), including bus, métro, paratransit, commuter train and the REM, once it is in service.
This measure, adopted by the City of Montreal in its 2022-2023 budget, aims to help seniors fight inflation, while improving their quality of life and their transportation.
“With inflation, the wallets of seniors, who live with stable incomes, are put to the test. By offering free public transit to people aged 65 and over, we want to make it easier for them to get around, but above all to break their isolation and encourage them to stay in the city. Seniors have helped build Montreal and their contribution is still immense today. Free public transit will allow them to continue to participate fully in Montreal life, while creating an additional incentive to use public transit,” said Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante.
“This is excellent news,” says Éric Alan Caldwell, Chair of the STM Board of Directors, “because this incentive will encourage more people to take public transit and could also boost customer traffic without necessarily increasing the load during peak periods. Seniors play a vital role in not only their neighbourhood life but throughout the city. We must meet their mobility needs, allowing them to take full part in all that the city has to offer.”
“The FADOQ – Île de Montreal welcomes this measure from the City of Montreal. This will allow all people aged 65 and over to maintain their mobility and thus to continue their social activities longer and more easily. Even more in these times of staggering increase in the cost of living » mentions Jocelyne Wiseman, President of the FADOQ – Île de Montreal.
How the free fare workds
Starting today, customers will be able to load the Free 65+ fare onto their OPUS cards. The fare is valid for 24 months, depending on the OPUS card expiry date. Customers can obtain the new fare as follows:
If you already have a photo OPUS card:
- You can load the Free 65+ fare onto your photo OPUS card at any métro station in Montréal, any metropolitan ticket office in Zone A or the Fairview Pointe-Claire STM terminus.
- You will have to show a valid proof of residence.
If you do not have a photo OPUS card:
- Fill out a photo OPUS card application form and bring it to any métro station, the STM photo studio (by appointment only), any metropolitan ticket office in Zone A or the Fairview Pointe-Claire STM terminus. You will have to pay a $15 card issuance fee.
- You will have to show a valid proof of age and proof of residence.
If you are a paratransit customer:
- You do not need to do anything for your paratransit trips. When you book a trip in Zone A, we will use the information in your customer file (age and place of residence) to validate your eligibility for the free fare. You must show your OPUS paratransit ID card every time you use our paratransit service.
- If you would like to use your free fare on the métro, bus, train or REM, you will have to load the Free 65+ fare onto your photo OPUS card.
Photo OPUS cards constitute proof that the people using them are eligible for a reduced fare. Once loaded onto a photo OPUS card, the new fare will allow the cardholder to validate their own transit fare on different types of fare validation equipment, no matter what mode of transportation they are using for their trip. Customers will still need to have a valid Free 65+ fare loaded and present their card during inspections
Communications campaign to support Montrealers
Upon the announcement of the Free 65+ fare, a communications campaign will be deployed in the agglomeration of Montréal to support customers and help them understand how the free fare works. The campaign will utilize a combination of media, including signage posted in the métro network and bus shelters, as well as more targeted media, to better reach residents of the agglomeration of Montréal aged 65 and over. Customers will be invited to obtain their Free 65+ All Modes A fare and to learn how it works by visiting www.stm.info/en/free65.
Click on the image to download it in high resolution. Photo credits: Louis-Étienne Doré.
Legend: Didier Rabette, client / Éric Alan Caldwell, President of the Board at the STM / Micheline Roch, client / Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montreal / Marie-Claude Léonard, CEO of STM / Danielle Blouin, client / Claire Booth, client
Legend: Valérie Plante, Mayor of Montreal / Danielle Blouin, client / Éric Alan Caldwell, President of the Board at the STM / Marie-Claude Léonard, CEO of STM
Legend: Martin Ouimet, STM employee / Micheline Roch, client