Category Archives: Fares

GO Transit Fare Increase Effective February 1st, 2016


At its meeting on Thursday, December 3, the Metrolinx Board of Directors approved a GO Transit fare increase which will take effect on February 1, 2016. In a release it was stated that the fare increase will help GO “respond to increasing ridership demand by providing customers with more travel options, enhanced and reliable service, and well-maintained facilities and equipment.”

GO Transit will see about 71 million boardings this year compared to about 68 million in 2014.

Single adult fares for paper tickets will increase as below:

  • a 40 cent increase on fares between $5.70 and $6.50
  • a 50 cent increase on fares between $6.51 and $8.25
  • a 60 cent increase on fares greater than $8.25

Fares for children, students and seniors will also increase accordingly.

Staff Looking to Expand Presto Availability in Hamilton

HSR 1013 in a Presto full wrap

The PRESTO card pilot at Fortinos is a success.

Back in September of 2014 Hamilton city council approved the implementation of a third party PRESTO vendor network, which began across all Fortinos locations in Hamilton in November of last year. The pilot equipped the Loblaws stores with equipment and training so that customer service staff could sell, load, and reload PRESTO cards to transit users. This third party network more than tripled the available locations to load the smart card and expanded availability to all corners of Hamilton.

Part of the pilot included 5,000 preloaded cards which waved the initial fee to purchase the smart fare card.

Current known issue with HSR Presto Loyalty Program

Since the fare increase on September 1st there has been an issue with the HSR Presto Loyalty Program. Instead of being charged $0.00 after eleven paid fares between Monday – Sunday cards are instead erroneously being charged $0.15.

Both the City of Hamilton and PRESTO card are aware of this issue and are working on a resolution. A rep from Presto has stated that the erroneous charges will be reversed once the corrections have been implemented.

Don’t be Overcharged for Bus Tickets! New Fares come into effect on September 1st

Student Tickets are yellow & Adult Tickets are green

Student Tickets are yellow & Adult Tickets are green

The HSR fares are changing effective September 1st and there have already been some instances of unlicensed vendors selling old HSR bus tickets at a higher price. New bus tickets are being issued which will be available for sale beginning on September 1st, which look different from current (old) tickets and have more information on them.

The student bus tickets are yellow while adult tickets are green.

To help combat fare fraud (unlicenced stores overcharging for bus tickets) the new tickets come with the price $2.15 [adult] / $1.80 [student] printed on the ticket. They are also marked with the validity date and a notice that “fare fraud is a criminal offence.”

The current (old) bus tickets can not sold at the new ticket price as passengers will be required to deposit an additional 15 cents into the farebox when they are used. Old tickets will no longer be valid as of September 30th, 2015. Old unused tickets can be exchanged for new bus tickets at the HSR Customer Service desk at the Hamilton GO Centre.

PRESTO Maintenance February 21st – 22nd

HSR 1013 in a Presto full wrap

PRESTO will be performing maintenance on devices from Saturday, February 21st until Sunday, February 22nd.

PRESTO is advising transit users, if you usually load money on your card online, please do so by Thursday, February 19th to avoid disruptions.

HSR Day Pass: Great for Family Day!


Hours for Customer Service at GO Centre Reduced Effective February 12th


Effective Thursday, February 12th the HSR Customer Service counter at the Hamilton GO Centre will see its service hours reduced. The counter’s new hours of operation will be Monday to Friday from 8:30am until 4:30pm, which are the previous operating hours before they were extended on August 19th, 2013.

“The hours are being reduced because the extended hours have proven not to be needed,” explained Robin, a customer service representative for the Hamilton Street Railway. “An analysis was done and shows passengers attending the Centre between 4:30 & 8 are minimal, therefore not warranting additional staff to man the centre during those hours.”

The customer service desk previously stopped selling paper tickets and passes. The PRESTO fare card, which can be loaded at the HSR counter, can also be loaded across the concourse at the GO Transit counters.

Some PRESTO Services Unavailable from January 23 to 24

HSR 1013 in a Presto full wrap

PRESTO is currently upgrading its system to prepare for the launch of the Union Pearson Express service this spring. Some services will be affected from January 23rd to January 24th.

To learn more, please see below.

PRESTO services affected

During the January 23-24 device upgrade, these PRESTO services will be affected:

  • Transactions performed online or by phone during this time will take longer to process and can take up to 48 hours to be added to your card.
  • Expect a delay in updates to the transaction history

Get Your PRESTO Card at Fortinos in Hamilton

Did you know that you can now purchase and reload your PRESTO card at local Fortinos stores in Hamilton?

As of Monday November 3rd, transit users can now go to any of our local Hamilton area Fortinos and purchase or load a PRESTO card. This gives transit users an additional nine (9) convenient locations to take care of their transit needs.

You can get your PRESTO card at one of the following locations:

Unlicensed Retailers Selling HSR Bus Tickets for Profit?

Different fare methods in Hamilton, including paper pass, tickets and Presto

HSR bus tickets are an alternative to paying cash when you board an HSR bus. Using tickets (or the PRESTO card) is a quicker way to pay and makes boarding the bus more efficient. Rather than fumbling with change at the farebox, and making sure that you have exact change, a ticket is quicker and easier. And it’s cheaper too. Using the PRESTO card or a bus ticket will cost an adult $2.00 rather than the $2.55 cash fare. A child ticket costs just $1.65.

But it’s come to my attention that there are some retailers which are overcharging for bus tickets. There is no mark-up for bus tickets and retailers are supposed to sell them at face value. Retailers don’t make any profit on selling tickets and passes. The benefit for retailers is the increased foot traffic in their business as those transit users who are buying tickets often make other purchases while they are there.

One concerned citizen who contacted the HSR was told to check if the retailer was one of those licensed to sell tickets. There are apparently various retailers who purchase tickets from stores, only to then resell them for profit.