Go COMO no longer accepts fast passes as payment on its buses
COLUMBIA - Go COMO stopped selling and accepting 30-day and 25-ride fast passes on Jan. 9. Bus riders will now have to get ticket books, available at the Wabash station and online.
The change comes after Columbia City Council approved an ordinance in November, which Mayor Treece introduced.
Juthika Thaker rides the bus to work at the Women's and Children's Hospital.
"I have a car but I'm learning to drive, so I thought this would be the best way to commute," she said.
Thaker said she recently ordered her new ticket books online.
"I was very appalled to know that they are not giving us the thirty-day unlimited pass because those tickets, it's just single-time use," she said. "I think for people who commute on a regular basis, they should have some fast pass or things like that."
She also said having to carry a ticket book would make it harder for riders to pay for their bus trip.
"It's very cumbersome, you have to keep the tickets with you all the time," Thaker said. "With one pass I can just put it in my wallet or something and I can use it everywhere."
City of Columbia's spokesperson Brian Adkisson said Go COMO had issues with the fare boxes in the buses, causing some people with fast passes to be able to ride for free.
Customers who had rides left over in their fast pass won't be able to redeem those.
Adkisson also said, "Given the inability of the fast pass system to track how many times a fast pass had been used, we are unfortunately unable to provide refunds."
Bus rider Dorothy Vetter said the city gave enough heads-up to users about the change.
"They used the double map and the announcement was on there," she said. "It was communicated okay, everyone knew about it."
Despite the change, Go COMO will continue to offer the semester-long bus pass.