Los Angeles transit riders will be able to climb aboard Metro’s trains and buses free of charge on key evenings this holiday season.
Metro announced this week that it will waive the $1.75 fare for rides on its vehicles December 24 and December 31, from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.
According to the transit agency, free rides during these times are meant to “help LA County residents enjoy the holidays safely and without the hassle of driving.” They’ll also allow holiday revelers to avoid planned street closures and congestion in areas around the region’s many New Year’s Eve celebrations.
On December 24, trains will run every 20 minutes between 9 p.m. and 2 a.m.
On December 31, Metro will offer 24-hour train service, with Red and Purple line trains running every 10 minutes between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m. Blue, Expo, Gold, and Green line trains will run every 12 minutes during this time.
Between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. all trains will run every 20 minutes.
This isn’t the first time this year that Metro has waived fares on a busy travel day. In October, Metro’s Board of Directors voted to offer free rides on election day, encouraging more residents to get to the polls.
Allowing riders to travel free doesn’t come cheap; before election day, agency staff estimated that lost fare revenue that day would amount to roughly $600,000. Still, the agency is weighing the possibility of offering free rides permanently.
Last week, Metro CEO Phil Washington suggested that a congestion pricing system, in which drivers are tolled in peak traffic conditions, could allow the agency to offer free fares “forever and ever.”