A new public transit fare system will be put in place for the entire Montreal region and its surrounding areas over the next four years starting in July.
The umbrella organization responsible for the region's transit agencies — the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain (ARTM) — approved the new fare system last December and recently released more details on how the fare reform will work.
There are currently 91 different transit districts in and around Montreal, with more than 700 different transit fares, depending on where you are located, the mode of transportation, and your age.
The ARTM plans on simplifying pricing across the board — narrowing it all down to three different zones that will be dubbed A, B, and C.
According to the recent press release, fares are scheduled to come down for seniors and students.
Starting July 1, children aged 11 and under are getting free rides throughout the public transit network, so long as they are accompanied by someone aged 14 or older who has a valid transit ticket.
Senior Montrealers aged 65 and over will see their monthly fares subsidized, with the ARTM lowering fares by 70% so long as they live within city limits.
The ARTM is also giving full-time students, aged 18 to 64, a 40 per cent discount on monthly passes.
Meanwhile, South Shore commuters who rely on the Champlain Bridge bus route are among those who will have to pay an extra $10 per year. That price will give them access to the light-rail network when it's available. The all-electric train network that links greater Montreal is scheduled to be in full service by the end of 2024.
With these changes, Montreal will be Zone A while Longueuil and Laval will be Zone B, and passengers can buy tickets based on the zones they are travelling within or to.
If it all sounds complicated, it's because it is. The ARTM outlines the new changes on its website, in French only.