Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get any Metro Pass on a TAP card?

Yes. Regular Metro 30-Day and 7-Day Passes are now sold online and at most TAP Vendor locations.  Senior and Student riders need to complete and submit a reduced fare application to obtain TAP cards that enable them to continue purchasing their fares at reduced rates. Most riders with disabilities will automatically receive their TAP cards in the mail.  Some businesses and schools provide regular or group-rate TAP cards for their employees and students. Check your workplace or school for transit options. All Metro Passes are now sold on TAP cards, paper tickets are no longer available.

How much does it cost?

TAP cards are $1 at TAP Vending Machines and onboard buses and $2 at TAP Vendor locations. A TAP card is always sold loaded with a pass or Stored Value. For more fare information see Metro Passes.

Where can I buy a TAP card?

You can buy TAP online, at Metro Customer Centers or at any TAP Vendor locations.

Where is my TAP card accepted? 

All Metro bus and Metro Rail lines currently accept TAP cards loaded with a Metro Pass or Stored Value as fare payment. See for the full list of transit systems on TAP.

How do I add another Metro Pass to my TAP card?

When your pass expires, reload your card at a TAP Vendor location, at a Metro Rail or Metro Orange Line TAP Vending Machine or on TAP’s official website at There is no need for a new card when you renew your pass, because updated information is automatically added onto your existing TAP card. Make sure to check your TAP card’s expiration date.

Can I borrow or lend out my TAP card to another person?

No. Cards are non-transferable and each rider must have their own card with loaded with fare to ride Metro. You may not load multiple passes for different riders on one TAP card. Exception: two children under age 5 do not need their own TAP card and may travel free with each fare-paying adult on Metro bus or rail.

What is Balance Protection?

Balance Protection is a free program that lets you replace a lost or stolen TAP card with its remaining balance or pass information for a $5 fee. You must sign up for Balance Protection to activate it on your card. Balance Protection forms are available at Metro Customer Centers, TAP Vendor locations or online at

What do I do if my card is lost or stolen?

Report it online or call 866.TAPTOGO.  If you are signed up for Balance Protection, your card balance and/or pass information will be restored and a new card will be mailed to you for a $5 fee.  Sign up for free here. Remember, your card can only be replaced if you have signed up for balance protection.

Do I need to tap every time I change Metro Rail trains?

Yes. When changing from one Metro Rail line to another, you are required to tap your card at a TAP validator before boarding your next train. Look for the blue TAP target and simply tap your card on it to validate your trip.

What if I don't tap my card on the TAP target?

Any time you ride the Metro System, you must tap your card. Fare inspectors have card readers, and you may be cited for fare evasion if you fail to tap. Remember, a Metro Pass loaded on your TAP card gives you unlimited rides, just like your paper Metro Pass did. So tap it every time.

How do I transfer from Metro bus to other municipal lines?

After using your TAP card to board a Metro bus or other participating municipal line, pay the bus operator the cash fee for a Metro-to-Muni transfer, and use the paper transfer slip or transfer that is loaded onto your TAP card (check with your local municipal line for transfer details) for local connecting service.

How do I transfer from Metro rail to another municipal line?

After using your TAP card to board the train, purchase a Metro-to-Muni transfer at a TAP Vending Machine before you leave the station.  You will have the choice of loading a transfer on your TAP card for TAP-enabled municipal operators, or purchasing a paper transfer (check with your local municipal line for transfer details). Both are the same price.

How do I transfer from a municipal line to Metro bus?

Your TAP card is valid on any bus operated by Metro as long as it is loaded with a valid Metro pass, Stored Value or Interagency Transfer.

How do I transfer from a municipal line to Metro rail?

Tell your operator that you would like to buy a transfer to Metro rail.  If you already have a TAP card, pay the operator and the electronic transfer will be loaded onto your card.  If you do not have a TAP card, pay the operator and you will receive a one-time use disposable paper TAP card (polka dot).  At the Metro Rail station, tap your card on the turnstile or validator.  Your card is good for one ride only. 

What is I-TAP?

Metro’s I-TAP (Institutional Transit Access Pass) provides full-time college students at participating campuses with a special-priced Metro pass at a reduced rate or at no cost to the student. I-TAP reduces parking demand, allowing more students more access to campus. Participating I-TAP campuses may be able to delay construction of new parking facilities by encouraging students to leave their cars at home and take transit to school. I-TAP also ensures better community relations by reducing student parking in surrounding neighborhoods. I-TAP can make college more affordable by eliminating or reducing the need for a car and gas. I-TAP is valid on all Metro buses and Metro Rail trains, seven days a week.  And because the pass is good 24/7, students can use their pass to commute to work too.

What are the Employer Annual Pass Programs?

Annual Transit Access Pass (A-TAP) and Business Transit Access Pass (B-TAP) are Employer Annual Pass Programs designed to encourage public transit use in the workplace. Employers and employees may qualify for Commuter Benefits, which will significantly reduce the cost of the employee pass and act as a business tax benefit for the employer. The cost per pass varies depending on which program a company opts for, number of employees and business location. For more information visit and our phone number 213.922.7983.

How should I care for my TAP card?

Treat your TAP card like a credit or debit card.  Do not bend, puncture, or wash the card.

Can my card demagnetize in my wallet if it is next to my credit cards?

No. You can keep your TAP card with your other credit cards.

How long will my TAP card last?

TAP card expiration dates vary, depending on your reduced fare status and the type of card you have. Be sure to check your card’s expiration date online, at TAP Vending Machines and at TAP Vendor Locations.


For more information on TAP, visit

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