WINNIPEG – As Winnipeg Transit works to phase out paper tickets, tokens are starting to be introduced.
They’re not for everyone, just for social agencies and schools to give out to those who need a ride.
Agencies and schools used to buy paper tickets in bulk and distribute them, to make sure kids got to school and people got to where they needed to go, but with paper meeting its eventual death on buses, tokens will be used instead.
“Tokens are being rolled out right now to some of the social service agencies. So far we’ve distributed about 17,000 tokens,” explains Jonathan Borland, information supervisor at Winnipeg Transit. “Our intention is to phase them in with different organizations. We didn’t want everyone to feel there was a rush and everyone had to get them instantly.”
As for the occasional rider, Transit still wants them to switch over to the electronic Peggo card.
“Load $20 of e-cash on it and stick it in your wallet for those times that you do need it,” Borland says. “Not everyone rides the bus everyday, but you may be in a situation where you have a meeting downtown and it’s easy just to hop on a bus and head downtown.”
If you don’t want to do that, exact change is still an option.
The tokens are made at the Mint, and in theory would save money over paper because they would be recycled.
Borland says Transit will meet in the fall to figure out when exactly paper tickets will be eliminated altogether.