More Of My Thoughts Regarding The TTC
For a person living in Toronto or the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) the TTC, as I have mentioned before, is not a viable alternative to owning and driving a car unless the person lives right in the downtown core. This post will deal with a couple more thoughts I have on why this is so.
First, I would like to talk about the TTC’c ‘fare currency’ for adult riders: Tokens. The TTC recently spent millions of dollars redesigning their tokens and making these new tokens because the old tokens were too easy to counterfeit. Why, oh why, I and many others ponder, didn’t they just switch to a far card system? I know that this is the long term plan for the TTC and they want to integrate it with the GO Transit system in the GTA but, quite frankly, the TTC should be just doing and letting the GTA transit systems catch up to them. The TTC should ONLY be concerned with the city of Toronto and their own fare collection, not any other transit systems’.
Second, I would like to talk about buying tokens or day passes or weekly passes. Currently, these are available in all TTC subway stations (where a fare collector is present) and “at over 1,200 TTC Authorized Ticket Agents in Toronto” and if you want to know where these Authorized Ticket Agents are located you have to call a information phone line, there is no listing or GoogleMaps mashup which has these Authorized Ticket Agents listed. I just took a break from writing this post and called the info number. After 5 minutes on the phone trying to find out where I could purchase a day pass and going through numerous automated menus the system told me that in order to find out where an Authorized Ticket Agent was located to I should push 0 to speak to operator (between 8am-6pm daily except weekends and holidays). It is currently 5:55pm on Monday, I pushed 0 and the system hung up on me. Clearly, it is somewhat difficult to find out where one can get a day pass or weekly pass without going to a subway station – which for the majority of Torontonians requires a long walk, taxi ride or riding the TTC.
So let’s say I decided that today or this week I am going to ride the TTC and give up my car and I need a day/week pass. I hop on the bus and pay my $3 fare and take the bus to the subway station. I get off at the station and while in the Fare Paid Area I ask the fare collector if I may buy a day pass (they cost $10) for a discounted price because I clearly have already paid for one full price fare in order to get into the Fare Paid Area. The answer, a gruff “No”. Understandable in a way as it is conceivable that someone might buy a day pass from more than one fare collector from within the Fare Paid Area at a discounted price. So why doesn’t the TTC make a special transfer or slip that a bus driver can give out to riders upon request so they may use it as a proof-of-payment when they get to the station and want to buy a day/week pass. Or, better yet, SELL DAY PASSES & WEEK PASSES ONLINE!
Further, even if I did manage to buy a day pass before getting into the TTC system when I come back in order to use it I have to always pass a manned fare collector booth, there is no scanning system for the unmanned subway station entrances in which I can use my day or week pass as one could a MetroPass (the TTC’s monthly pass).
These are only some of the problems that need to be addressed with the Toronto Transit System.
But that’s just my $0.02