(Editor’s note: Sound Transit and Streetcar also are discontinuing fare collections at this time. Reduced Schedules begin March 23.)

To promote social distancing and support the health of transit employees and the riding public, King County Metro on March 21, 2020, will discontinue fare collections until further notice and direct riders to board and exit at the rear doors of buses only, if they are able.

Effective with the start of service Saturday, March 21, riders will not be required to pay fare when riding King County Metro services, including buses, water taxi and Access paratransit, until further notice.

Riders also will be directed to board and exit at the rear doors of buses, reserving front-door access for customers using mobility devices or who require use of the boarding ramp.

“As this crisis evolves, we are constantly reviewing all of our practices and policies to provide the best service while keeping people safe,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Changing how riders board and exit our bus fleet and also suspending all fares is part of that effort. It is essential to keep this community on the move, and I thank all the operators, mechanics, support staff, and riders who are helping us get through this, together.”

These moves acknowledge the direction of public health to take steps necessary to limit the spread of COVID-19 and we continue to call on riders to do all they can by avoiding traveling when sick, covering coughs and sneezes.

Metro is relaying these planned changes to our partners at Sound Transit and the City of Seattle. Sound Transit also announced it is stopping collection of fares on all modes and directing riders to board at the back doors. Streetcar also is discontinuing the collection of fare.

Metro is communicating this upcoming change with transit operators today and working to develop and install signage directing customers to board and exit at the rear doors unless they need the boarding ramp, and that fare payment is not required starting March 21.