Throughout the pandemic, Santa Barbara MTD has continued to provide robust public transit service throughout the South Coast, and the essential workers of Goleta have remained dedicated riders. MTD’s dedication to maintaining the health and safety of passengers and bus operators has not wavered, and COVID-19 best practices are still in effect. While service on certain lines serving a few neighborhoods and the closed campuses of SBCC and UCSB have been suspended over the past year, the lion’s share of bus service has stayed at normal levels and ridership is now on the rise. In an effort to continue operations and restore service as the economy reopens, MTD will soon collect fares again and is proposing service changes to go into effect in August 2021.
Santa Barbara MTD recently reopened the renovated Transit Center in Downtown Santa Barbara in anticipation of resuming fare collection on Monday, May 10th, 2021. On that day, buses will return to traditional front door boarding and fares will be required to board. Fares are the same as they were pre-pandemic–$1.75 for adults and youth, and $0.85 for seniors 62+ and riders with disabilities. Riders are encouraged to get their passes before the 10th, in order to avoid a rush.
In addition to returning to fare collection, MTD is currently seeking input on its annual proposed service changes. The public is encouraged to learn more about the proposals and to weigh in by taking a brief survey. There is also a virtual community meeting on these changes scheduled for Tuesday, May 11, 2021 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. To take the survey (in English or Spanish) and to register for the virtual meeting, visit https://sbmtd.gov/servicechanges.
For questions about service changes, bus fares, and bus safety, the public can call 805-963-3364.