News   Apr 03, 2020
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Arc Smart Fare System

Arc Cards can now be reloaded at fare vending machines, but they are not for sale yet.

I tried two machines: One at University, and the other at Corona. Both worked fine.

At University, I selected the $5 option and paid with my debit card.
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At Corona, I decided to try out the "flex top-up", which ended up just letting me enter a custom amount. I was also able to pay using Google Pay, and the transaction name included the specific station where the fare vending machine was located.
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My receipts from both transactions - looks like the printers are slightly misaligned, but it's not a major issue.
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Arc Cards can now be reloaded at fare vending machines, but they are not for sale yet.

I tried two machines: One at University, and the other at Corona. Both worked fine.

At University, I selected the $5 option and paid with my debit card.
View attachment 425575View attachment 425574View attachment 425573View attachment 425572View attachment 425571


At Corona, I decided to try out the "flex top-up", which ended up just letting me enter a custom amount. I was also able to pay using Google Pay, and the transaction name included the specific station where the fare vending machine was located.
View attachment 425570View attachment 425569View attachment 425567


My receipts from both transactions - looks like the printers are slightly misaligned, but it's not a major issue.
View attachment 425568
Man, I hope that isn't the final UI. Looks 20 years old.
 
I was just in Toronto and got a PRESTO card. When you tap it, it shows you how much balance you have left and if a tap is a transfer or counted as a new ride. I didn't think about that back when the feedback portal was open, but would add that now. I also wonder what other simple things like this I haven't thought about!

Also, I noticed that the Valley Line LRT only has ARC machines. If it weren't delayed, would ETS simply have not worried about fare verification on the Valley Line? (I also think public transit should be free, but that's a different matter.)
 
I was just in Toronto and got a PRESTO card. When you tap it, it shows you how much balance you have left and if a tap is a transfer or counted as a new ride. I didn't think about that back when the feedback portal was open, but would add that now. I also wonder what other simple things like this I haven't thought about!

Also, I noticed that the Valley Line LRT only has ARC machines. If it weren't delayed, would ETS simply have not worried about fare verification on the Valley Line? (I also think public transit should be free, but that's a different matter.)
I suspect it could have been that the VLSE was free, under the guise of being a "Thank you" for enduring the delay, when the reality would be they weren't ready with Arc.
However, with the Arc vending machines now reloading cards, it is possible they can get the machines selling single ride tickets for cash fares. That still leaves validating store bought tickets. I suspect it would be ticket users who would get a free pass, although, there would probably be an expectation to be able to present a valid, new ticket while travelling as proof of intended payment. Unless you're only using the VLSE LRT, if you need to transfer to the LRT or a bus to finish your journey then you would need to use your ticket at that point anyways.
 
I was just in Toronto and got a PRESTO card. When you tap it, it shows you how much balance you have left and if a tap is a transfer or counted as a new ride. I didn't think about that back when the feedback portal was open, but would add that now. I also wonder what other simple things like this I haven't thought about!

Also, I noticed that the Valley Line LRT only has ARC machines. If it weren't delayed, would ETS simply have not worried about fare verification on the Valley Line? (I also think public transit should be free, but that's a different matter.)
Are you saying the arc cards don’t show the balance currently?? Almost every card I’ve ever seen has done that…
 
If you tap a card again within 90 minutes does it charge you again or does it know you're still riding on the original fare?
 
If you tap a card again within 90 minutes does it charge you again or does it know you're still riding on the original fare?
It knows you're using the original fare, and does not charge you unless you go from a local bus to a commuter bus (I think in that case, it just adds the difference, but I'd need to double check my tap history to confirm).
 
It knows you're using the original fare, and does not charge you unless you go from a local bus to a commuter bus (I think in that case, it just adds the difference, but I'd need to double check my tap history to confirm).
Do you still have to tap off of local busses in order to not be charged? If so, I foresee a lot of pain in terms of disembarking time and customer complaints from being overcharged.

Also, what exactly is a regional route? Are those just the routes currently being run by the other municipalities?
 
Do you still have to tap off of local busses in order to not be charged? If so, I foresee a lot of pain in terms of disembarking time and customer complaints from being overcharged.

Also, what exactly is a regional route? Are those just the routes currently being run by the other municipalities?
The system still very much encourages you to tap off of local buses still.
As I covered here: https://edmonton.skyrisecities.com/forum/threads/arc-smart-fare-system.26805/post-1859297
A compensation fare is still charged if you fail to tap off, but, that charge is now $0.
Who knows what they may opt to go with when full rollout happens, although, I don't think they will got back to tapping off for compensation fares. This also starts to become an EMTSC problem. Indeed, long term, I could see tapping off required on EMTSC buses but no tapping off required on ETS buses.

Regional routes are, yes, generally operated by other municipalities, but includes the 747 which is partially funded and operated by Edmonton.
 
Oh yea and the gong show of if one pays a cash fare on the bus, they have to buy a new cash fare on Skytrain since the bus dispenses tickets that don't have NFC required at the fare gates. Thankfully contactless credit card payment is transferrable to Skytrain. Or better yet, get a Compass card and pay the stored value rate.

One could attempt to forego Skytrain and take the bus to avoid paying zone fares but there are very few bus routes that run parallel to Skytrain and none of them cross the Fraser River.

One thing I love about Arc over Compass is the capped day/month fares. Day and monthly passes have to be loaded onto Compass before use AND they take about 20 minutes to load onto your card which I unfortunately found out the hard way. Or rather I was out an extra $2.50 for the day.

Oh, I had previously erroneously mentioned before that one does not have to tap off Arc cards after they reach their cap which is incorrect. Not tapping off Arc Card means there's a compensation fare and those fares DO NOT count towards the monthly cap.
There are absolutely parallel bus routes that cross the river, such as the Highway 1 Express routes, which parallel the Expo Line Surrey branch
 
There are absolutely parallel bus routes that cross the river, such as the Highway 1 Express routes, which parallel the Expo Line Surrey branch
It took me 5.5 hours to get home from downtown to my house near Fleetwood Park in the massive Skytrain shut down of 2014. It involved bus after bus after bus after bus, all crowded because you just can't replicate a service that carries 500 passengers every 2 minutes with a bus system. After awhile, I gave up and hung out with friends north of the Fraser River.

Normally though it would take almost double the time. With Skytrain, it's a train and a bus for an hour 15 minutes long trip. Avoiding Skytrain, it's about 4-5 buses for what I'm guessing is a 2 hour 15 minute long trip.
 
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That's very exciting! The link leads to the project page, which doesn't mention this. Is there another link avalible, or did they just scrub it for now?

EDIT: Spruce Grove's website mentions it too, and myarc.ca leads to the pilot site now. It's happening!!

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