Sound Transit's Fare Engagement Pilot Project

Sound Transit's Fare Engagement Pilot Project

After nearly 4 years of work, the Sound Transit Board completed its adoption of a package of changes that update Sound Transit’s fare compliance approaches:

  • Warnings are increased from one to two in a 12-month period
  • Increased options for resolving cases for initial citations
  • No involvement with collection agencies

The Board also reinforced support for income-qualified riders, including lower ORCA LIFT fares that will be promoted through expanded marketing; extended subsidized pass programs.

  • Reduction of Lift fare from $1.50 to $1.00
  • Addition funding for outreach for reduced fare programs 
  • Fully subsidized ORCA pilot program extended until end of 2024

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Passengers will see fare ambassadors at Link and Sounder stations and onboard trains. Look for the yellow hats!

Fare ambassadors will:

  • Check fares.
  • Answer questions.
  • Help passengers learn to use the system.
  • Help passengers purchase ORCA cards and passes.
  • Assist passengers in finding the ORCA fare that is best for them.
  • Help income-eligible riders learn how to get an ORCA LIFT card.

The Fare Ambassadors Pilot continues, working on improving the passenger experience when it comes to fare compliance.

In late summer 2022, the Fare Engagement team will present to the Sound Transit Board the permanent Fare Ambassador program.

In early fall 2022, the newly adopted fare compliance policy takes effect.

Non-payment interactions within 12 months

Old Program

New Program

1st ​



2nd ​

Civil infraction​


3rd ​

Civil infraction​

$50 Citation*


Civil infraction​

$75 Citation* ​

5th and beyond​

Civil infraction​

$124 Civil infraction**​

*Sound Transit managed resolutions; non-monetary options such as educational activities and community service, along with registration for reduced fare programs

**Depending on location when issuing the infraction, resolved through King County District Court or Pierce County District Court

A more effective and equitable fare engagement program starts with authentic community relationships. We're grateful to the individuals and groups who've challenged us to improve, and we'll continue to rely on your feedback in the months to come.

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Call us: 800-201-4900

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