Eco Pass Program FAQs

SMART’s Eco Pass Program encourages regular ridership by providing discounted, universal passes to employers, colleges, and institutions. Eco Passes are purchased by the employer or institution and are distributed to its employees or members. The base price for an Eco Pass is already discounted, and based on the number of participants, SMART applies an additional discount. It doesn’t matter how far your commute is or how many times you ride the train, SMART’s Eco Pass offers one flat rate with unlimited rides and free weekends.

 

Why should employers offer Eco Passes to their employees?

  • All public, private, and non-profit employers in the Bay Area with 50 or more full-time employees are required offer a Commuter Benefits Program to their employees. Eco Passes can help employers meet that requirement. For more information, please visit the Bay Area Commuter Benefits Program web page at www.511.org.

How much do Eco Passes cost?

  • SMART’s Eco Pass pricing is based on the number of participants in the program.  For instance, if an employer has 60 employees wanting to participate, they would qualify for the $193 monthly rate.  That means that each Eco Pass would cost roughly $9.65 per weekday or $2,316 per year, with unlimited use and free weekends. Please refer to the SMART Eco Pass Program Fact Sheet for more information.

How do I pay for the Eco Passes?

  • Eco Passes qualify as a commuter benefit and therefore can be paid using pre-tax payroll deductions. Employers will be required to pay SMART up front for the Eco Passes, but can choose to either subsidize the Eco Passes or use pre-tax payroll deductions from participating employees to pay the costs. Any pre-tax payments will need to go through the employer, and cannot be sent to SMART by the employee.

Can I buy a pass for less than one year?

  • Eco Passes can be purchased in four-, six-, or twelve-month increments. 

Can I pay monthly? 

  • Typically payment is due up front. However, SMART would be willing to accept quarterly payments depending on the size and need of the business or organization.

What do I do with the Eco Pass in the event of an employee separation or termination?

  • Once purchased, employers can decide how to distribute their Eco Passes. In the event of employee separation or termination, it is up to the employer to collect and redistribute the Eco Pass.      

I want to buy Eco Passes for my employees.  How do I get started?