Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority

CARTA connects Charleston-area transit riders to work, school, healthcare, tourist attractions, the airport and more.

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CARTA Approves Free Student Fare Program

The Charleston Area Transportation Authority (CARTA) Board of Directors voted last week to implement a permanent policy allowing students in grades K-12 to ride at no cost as part of the system’s Free Student Fare initiative.

The fare structure had previously been in place as a pilot program since early 2019 and has seen monthly ridership surpass 7,000.

“The Free Student Fare initiative permanently eliminates a mobility barrier for students, sets the stage for the next generation of transit ridership and offers relief to parents whose children ride CARTA,” said CARTA Board of Directors Chairman Mike Seekings. “Getting to school, recreational activities or a part-time job is easier than ever for students and making those connections for free today allows kids to get comfortable with public transit.”

The Free Student Fare program is available to all public and private school students and applies to all CARTA services. Children under 5 also ride for free. Student IDs are recommended when boarding. 

CARTA buses can be tracked in real-time by downloading the Transit App. Trips can be planned and details on CARTA routes and services can be found at RideCARTA.com. Questions regarding the program should be directed to CARTA marketing and communications manager Michelle Emerson, who can be reached at memerson@bcdcog.com or (843) 529-0333.

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Transit App

Download “Transit” and travel like a true Charlestonian.

Available in the App Store and on Google Play, “Transit” offers numerous features to help you easily navigate around Charleston.

Bus Route: See vehicle locations in real time, find nearby stops, and receive stop announcements.

Service Alerts: Keep on top of schedule changes, stop relocations and other unexpected surprises.

Favorites: Always take the same bus? Move it to the top of the list by adding it to your favorites.

Timetables: View the full schedule for a route and set alarms to remind you to leave.

Countdowns: Get real-time predictions based on data from the transit agency.

“Go”: Get step-by-step transit directions and notifications about when to leave for your trip and when to get off the bus.

Plan a trip!: Compare trips side by side with your preferred transport modes selected.

View Transit 101

Download TransitApp from Google Play Store
Download TransitApp from Apple Store