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SRTA bus service free across Fall River, New Bedford until July

by Staff

FALL RIVER — The Southeastern Regional Transit Authority wants people to make taking the bus their new year’s resolution — and to help them keep it, SRTA is free for half a year. 

Thanks to a “Try Transit” grant from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, SRTA’s fixed route and demand services will be free from Jan. 1 to June 30. The program is designed to tempt new customers who normally drive to save gas by commuting, shopping, doing errands and getting around the region via bus — and to give a financial break to people who already rely on public transportation. 

Last year, SRTA made its services free for just over a month during the holiday season.  

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Where does SRTA bus service run? 

SRTA has 10 fixed routes covering Fall River, another 10 in New Bedford, and an intercity bus connecting the two cities with stops along the way. 

It also runs an on-demand transport service for disabled people that can be used in Fall River, New Bedford, Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Freetown, Mattapoisett, Somerset, Swansea and Westport.  

All those services will be free during the “Try Transit” period. 

How do I know where SRTA routes run? 

The SRTA website features maps of all its routes, including interactive Google Maps. SRTA’s Bustracker app for iPhone and Android can also display all the routes with real-time tracking information – it makes it easy to find the next available bus. 

Service generally runs from 5:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m., though some routes have extended night hours.  

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How does the on-demand service work? 

The demand-response service is for use by disabled riders — to be eligible for it, obtain an application on SRTA’s website, fill it out, and have a doctor sign it. Rides can be booked up to seven days ahead of time. The service is available from 5:20 a.m. to 10:10 p.m. weekdays, from 6:10 a.m. to 8:05 p.m. on Saturdays and holidays, and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays. 

What is the usual bus fare? 

The usual fare is $1.50 per ride, or $1.25 if you use a Charlie card — but from the start of the year until the end of June, it’s free. 

Dan Medeiros can be reached at [email protected]. Support local journalism by purchasing a digital or print subscription to The Herald News today.

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