Starting this fall, students in the Washington, DC area will get to ride Metrobus for free. WMATA could also take advantage of this opportunity and simplify its system for student fares as well, according to greatergreaterwashington.org.
“Giving students free bus fare is a great idea, but parents and students also need an easy and convenient way to take advantage,” said Jessica Christy, with a child in both DC Public Schools and DC Public Charter Schools.
The Metro currently offers a discounted fare for students, but it’s hard to take advantage of. In order to make a family eligible for student fares, parents have to obtain the proper forms from their children’s schools. The forms must then be submitted in person to the Metro sales offices or WMATA headquarters.
Students can also get a monthly SmartStudent pass for $30, but only after they obtain a Student Travel Card from the District Department of Transportation.
“The current system is not easy or convenient for parents who have 9-to-5 jobs or students who are in school all day. And if your school doesn’t have the proper forms, you are out of luck. These hoops likely exist to avoid fraud, but there’s got to be a better way,” said Christy.
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