612-373-3333 | www.metrotransit.org
Metro Transit is the public transportation resource for the Twin Cities, offering an integrated network of buses and trains, and serves as a resources for those who carpool, vanpool, walk or bike.
How to Ride
IPR staff is available at orientation and enrollment appointments to talk about using public transportation in Minneapolis. We will take you through the steps of finding a cost-effective transit pass, using the online resources to plan your trip, riding the bus and Light Rail, and getting to where you need to go.
- Rush hours: Monday-Friday 6-9 a.m. & 3-6:30 p.m.
- Local fare is charged on light rail.
- SuperSaver Stored Value cards. A prepaid card that you purchase in the amount of $10. When you get on the bus, you simply swipe the card and the trip cost is automatically deducted. (NOTE: Stored Value passes do not work on the light rail).
- SuperSaver 31-day pass. Take as many bus rides as you want within 31 days of activating the card. There are multiple tiers of these passes, which can be confusing. We recommend and sell the $85 dollar one because it is good for rides costing $2.25 or less, which covers every type of ride on a regular bus (local fare) and express buses during non-rush hours.
- Go-To College Pass. This is by far the best value most of the year, and the pass we recommend to all our students. This pass is good for unlimited rides for the course of a traditional college semester (roughly mid-August through the end of December and January 1 through the end of May). The cost is $175 — an incredible savings over purchasing SuperSavers. Summer passes are also available for $90 (June 1 through mid-August). The College Pass is good for rides on the light rail and suburban transit systems as well. This opens up the opportunity to live in a suburb and still have the benefit of saving money on gas and parking that public transportation makes possible.
The SuperSaver passes can be purchased online at metrotransit.org , at select transit stations, and in IPR’s Student Accounts Department. The Go-To College Pass can only be purchased in the student accounts department, and you must have your student ID.
The Hiawatha Line Light Rail is part of the MetroTransit system. It was developed a few years ago to provide environmentally friendly and convenient transportation along a path that runs from downtown Minneapolis to the Mall of America. The trains are electrically powered and run on a schedule similar to the buses. They also require the same fare as buses, and you are able to transfer from light rail to bus (and vice-versa) without making another payment, just as you would transfer from bus to bus. The light rail has planned expansions on both ends of the line.
Unlike buses, the light rail cars do not have fareboxes — you pay for your ride at a machine and at the station and receive a ticket before you board. Fare inspectors wander the cars and randomly ask passengers to show their tickets. You can use cash, a credit card, a 31-day pass, or any SuperSaver card at the station. If you are using a Go-To College Pass, you do not need a separate ticket or transfer. Just make sure you have it and your student ID ready to show an inspector.
MetroTransit works in conjunction with several suburban bus services. You can use both the SuperSavers and the Go-To College Pass with these systems. The suburbs served are Maple Grove, Eden Prairie, Chanhassen, Chaska, Burnsville, Apple Valley, Eagan, Rosemount, Savage, Plymouth, Coon Rapids and Elk River. Suburban living is a very good option if you are determined to have a car when you come to school, as parking is almost always free. If you live near a Park and Ride, commuting to Downtown Minneapolis is simple. If you’re interested in this option, go to www.metrotransit.org and click on Transportation Links. This will give you a list of the different suburban systems, and you can compare them all to see what would work best for you. They all vary in times and locations of pick up/drop off.
This is an incredibly useful service for those with no car, or those who want to cut down on driving as much as possible. Dial-a-Ride is a transit option within certain communities, and generally costs less than $3. You call to make a reservation for a pick-up time, and the Dial-a-Ride transport will pick you up and bring you wherever you need to go in the specified area. It is a shared service, so the ride may not be direct, and there may be some wait time. Another use for Dial-a-Ride could be to get to and from a bus stop, if there is not one within walking distance of your house. Check out the Dial-a-Ride section under Transportation Links on the MetroTransit website for all the details you’ll need.
Riding a bike is a convenient, cost-effective and environmentally friendly way to get around Minneapolis. Most all apartments have bike racks (be sure to ask when you call them). Check out the biker section on metrotransit.org for some useful tips and resources.
The City of Minneapolis has a website that explains everything you need to know about biking in the city: http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/bicycles.
Check out the site to find resources such as bicycle maps, bike parking options & more! Plan your trip to utilize the downtown bike lanes and look into secure parking options such as bike storage lockers.
Taxis can be a lot of money if you’re taking one alone, but if you go with friends the cost becomes more reasonable. They are, of course, not an every day solution but they are helpful in a pinch or if you need to go somewhere that’s not near the bus line. It is a good idea to program to your cell phone or memorize a couple of the numbers so you can have them if you need transportation at short notice.
A few cab companies in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul area:
- Blue & White Taxi: 612-333-3333
- ABC Taxi: 612-788-1111
- Red & White Taxi: 612-871-1600
- Yellow Cab Co.: 612-888-8800
- Checker Cab: 612-824-9999
- Airport Taxi
- Minneapolis: 612-721-0000
- St. Paul: 612-222-0000
Walking is the simplest and often overlooked form of transportation. There are many apartment buildings in Minneapolis that are a 30 minute walk or less from IPR. Many of our students that come from warmer climates experience a little surprise when winter hits, especially those that walk to school. The important thing to remember is to bundle up when walking in the cold, and to wear shoes that have a little traction for those icy spots. Walking can save you a lot of money in transportation costs and it’s good exercise too.
One reality of a winter in Minnesota is snow. If you have a car in the cities, then you need to be aware of snow emergency policies. If you are a renter with off-street parking, check with your landlord about snow removal to find out when and where you will need to move your car in the event of heavy snowfall. If you park on the street, memorize this number: 612-348-SNOW. That is the Minneapolis Snow Hotline. Call it periodically during heavy snowfall to see if a snow emergency has been declared. If it has, you will need to follow specific rules about moving your car or it will be towed and impounded. Go to the city of Minneapolis web site (http://www.minneapolismn.gov/snow/) to figure out when and where to move your car.
If you live in St. Paul, the number is 651-266-PLOW, website(www.stpaul.gove/depts/publicworks/snowplow.html)
Also, if severe winter weather precipitates a cause for safety concern, schools and colleges may cancel classes and activities. To find out if IPR is closed due to weather conditions, tune your television to WCCO channel 4 (CBS), listen to WCCO radio on channel 8:30 a.m., or check out wcco.com.