Reduced Cost Programs


Reliable and affordable transportation solutions are important to ensure you make it to your weekly appointments, grocery trips, family gatherings, doctor’s trips, and more. Many transportation providers offer reduced cost options to qualifying Austinites.

Learn about all the reduced cost programs available to you. Below are the details for each provider so you can see all your options for making Smart Trips around town!

Capital Metro Reduced Fare ID Card Program

The Reduced Fare ID (RFID) Card enables eligible riders to receive a half-price fare. The card costs $3 and is good for 2 years.

To qualify for the RFID Card, you must be in ONE of the following groups:

  • Seniors 65 and older
  • Medicare card holders
  • Active-duty military personnel
  • Riders with disabilities (see eligibility guidelines)

Students 6-18 who do not have a school ID issued by their school can also apply for an RFID card. Eligible riders must have the RFID Card with them in order to receive the reduced fare. Lost, stolen or damaged cards cost $3 to replace for the first 2 replacements. The 3rd replacement costs $6. You can replace your card at the Transit Store.

How to apply (there are several ways to get an application for an RFID Card): 

How to use your RFID Card to board the bus:

  1. Tap it on the target area of the farebox. Be prepared to show your ID to the bus operator, if requested.
  2. Insert exact cash fare or a Stored Value Card into the top of the farebox, or swipe your pass through the card reader.
  3. If needed, ask the bus operator for a Reduced Day Pass.

Austin B-Cycle For All

B-Cycle For All follows in Austin B-Cycle’s mission to improve the mobility, economy, and health of the Austin community. In order to make bike share accessible for low-income earners, B-Cycle offers qualifying residents annual memberships for $5 (plus tax)!

Participants in B-Cycle For All get all the same benefits of a Local365 membership: access to nearly 600 B-cycles at 76 stations around Austin, and you can ride as many times as you like for up to 60 minutes at one time, without additional fees. Youth memberships have the same access privileges and also come with a free bike helmet!

To qualify for the B-Cycle for All program, you must:

  • Be an Austin resident
  • Have an annual household income of $28,500 or less
  • NOT be a full-time student

Children ages 13-17 are eligible for Youth memberships based on their parent’s eligibility.

How to apply: fill out the Eligibility Form online.

Lime Access

Lime Access offers an affordable way to use Lime in Austin. Lime partners with PayNearMe in the United States to support a text-to-unlock feature, both of which promote equitable mobility by removing the barrier of smartphone and credit card ownership.

Lime Access members receive the following pricing for Lime-S electric scooters: $0.50 to unlock, +7 cents per minute (a discount of 50% or more).

To qualify for Lime Access, you must:

  • Participate in any local, state, or federally-run assistance program

How to apply:

  • Use this link to securely submit your information to Lime.
  • Enter your Full Name, Phone Number, Valid government-issued photo ID, and proof of low income status (e.g. EBT card, discounted utility bill, or any other state or federally-run assistance program document)
  • A Lime representative will get back to you within 2 business days with any next steps and further information.

Once you’ve joined Lime Access, you can also pay using cash at one of PayNearMe’s 27,000+ retail locations.

One Bird

One Bird is a program that provides discounted access to those eligible for state or federal assistance. One Bird eliminates the $1 base fee per ride for anyone who is currently enrolled in, or eligible for a state or federal assistance program. Waiving the base ride fee means that eligible riders can ride Bird for 15 cents per minute.

To qualify for One Bird, you must:

  • Be currently enrolled in or eligible for a state or federal assistance program, including but not limited to CalFresh, Medicaid, SNAP, or discounted utility bill

How to apply: Email proof of qualification (your student or military ID), along with your full name and phone number to ONE@BIRD.CO. Approval takes 2 to 3 days.

RED, WHITE & BIRD is available to active duty and retired military personnel.