Metro's new set of fare changes goes into effect on September 15, but this time it's a little more complicated than simply dropping an extra quarter in the subway vending machine, says The Source. For the first time, the transit agency will now include free transfers in the price of a fare, though only for two hours and only for riders paying with a TAP card; cash fares are still only good for that single bus or train. However, the price of that ride will be bumped from $1.50 up to $1.75—still pretty reasonable compared to other transit systems, and some riders might find themselves actually saving money now that they can transfer from, say, the 720 to the Red Line to the Blue Line to the Green Line to whatever (assuming they can do it in under two hours).
A big note about the transfers: they must be made on a one-way ride. If you're trying to get to Union Station from Culver City, you can take the Expo Line to DTLA and transfer for free with a TAP card to the Red or Purple Line to get to Union Station. But if you need to return to Culver City, that ride is not free—the TAP cards will not allow you to swipe again for free access to the subway or Expo Line, even within the two hours. Basically, you can't return to the same bus or rail line in the same two-hour period.
Transfers to other systems—like Big Blue Bus, Culver City bus, etc.—are not covered by free transfers either, though discounted transfers can be purchased at TAP machines. Transfers from other systems require paper passes, limited use TAP cards, or transfers loaded directly onto a Metro TAP card, depending on the agency and how compatible they are with Metro.
College fares will also rise to the standard price, while K-12 student fares remain frozen. There are deeper discounts available for lower-income students, including college kids, as well as seniors.
The increasingly-popular Silver Line bus rapid transit line, which runs express freeway service from the El Monte bus station to the Harbor Gateway Transit Center, will also be changing its complicated fare structure.
Oh, and the day passes jump from $5 to $7.