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BART fare increases start Jan. 1

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BART will also introduce a 50-cent surcharge for paper tickets. (Steven Ho/S.F. Examiner)

BART fares are set to increase after ringing in the New Year.

A 50-cent surcharge for paper blue tickets will also begin Jan. 1, in an effort by BART to encourage riders to adopt reusable Clipper Cards. 

The 2.7 percent fare increase is inflation-based and occurs on a biennial basis. The increase was reauthorized by the BART Board of Directors in 2013, and generates funding for what BART called in a statement its “highest priority improvements,” like new train cars.

The fare increase dollar amount varies depending on starting point and destination. On a trip from Powell Station in San Francisco to Ashby Station in Berkeley, for instance, the increase adds up to about 10 cents on a $3.85 trip.

Surcharges for paper tickets are not new, as the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency adopted a similar surcharge for Muni buses and trains in The City in July. BART will also increase the minimum fare for a paper blue ticket to $2.50.

“Paper tickets jam our fare gates so moving more riders to Clipper mean less jams and fare gate maintenance,” BART said in a news release, and added that other Clipper Card advantages include compatibility with other transit agencies.

The minimum dollar amount needed to enter the BART system will also increase from $1.95 to $2 for adults, $1 for youth and 75 cents for seniors and people with disabilities using Clipper.

No fare increase is immediately on the horizon for Muni, according to the SFMTA. Those traditionally occur in July and are also tied to inflation. However, Visitor Passports will increase $1 across the board Jan. 1.

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