King County Metro’s Access paratransit team is pleased to present a better way to book ahead, or in select areas, on the fly! We also want to make sure you are aware that on Thursday, Oct. 1, Metro will restart fare collection for all services, including Access.

You may have noticed that there are changes in Metro’s bus service schedule as of September 19. Some routes have been revised or reduced, and some hours of service have been shortened. Although Access is designed to mirror the bus system in terms of service area and service hours, Metro has decided to not make similar reductions to Access service area and hours order to meet the extraordinary needs of the Access-qualified community

Fares restored for all Access trips starting Oct. 1

Starting Oct. 1, all standard Access rides – whether by van or taxi vehicle – will cost $1.75. You can pay  with cash, the Transit GO Ticket app (sign-up here), or your ORCA monthly pass. In coming months, we’ll also be launching online fare payment for Access.

Historically, Access’ scheduling center has deployed taxis – either sedans or vans – to fulfil about 15 to 20% of all trips. If a taxi serves a scheduled trip, those trips have been free to Access riders, but not free to Metro. Taxi vehicles are an important component of the Access paratransit program as a whole, as they help maximize resources and reduce costs.

Starting Oct. 1, the $1.75 fare will also be collected on taxi vehicle trips, either by cash or mobile ticket at the time of service, or with your ORCA monthly pass when booking the ride. For more information, contact Access Rider Services at 206-205-5000; press 4 then 2.

Online trip booking coming soon to Access paratransit

Access paratransit’s new online Trip Manager is the easy and convenient way to book and manage your Access trips. The team is putting the finishing touches on the platform now and it is scheduled to launch in October. Once live, riders will be able to use Access Trip Manager to:

  • Easily book most trips 24/7
  • Change or cancel existing trip reservations
  • Request recurring trips
  • View trip history
  • Track the Access van on a map when it’s on its way to pick you up

Riders will need their Access Client ID number, email address, and date of birth to enroll. We’ll update this blog post in the next few weeks once Trip Manager is up-and-running.

Metro expands existing on-demand service to Access riders in southeast Seattle and Tukwila

Metro heard from Access customers that they wanted to be able to take impromptu trips without calling for advanced reservations. The new Via Point-to-Point is a pilot, on-demand offering available to Access customers for curb-to-curb trips in southeast Seattle and Tukwila. It leverages the existing Via to Transit pilot currently connecting residents in the service area to and from three transit hubs. Via to Transit is a partnership between King County Metro and City of Seattle.

Via Point-to-Point is offered in a designated service area, during specific service hours. (For more information, see the flyer). Please note that this service is recommended for customers who need curb-to-curb service; it is not recommended for customers who require door-to-door or hand-to-hand service.

Metro will test whether this offering can better serve its Access-eligible customers in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Metro has plans to roll out a similar pilot offering in the Bellevue area later this fall.

Please note that Via Point-to-Point cannot accept trips scheduled in advance, and only accepts on-demand bookings. Masks are required for drivers and passengers when using Via Point-to-Point.

To find out if Via Point-to-Point is right for you, contact 206-258-7739.