U-Pass BC - Your ticket to ride!
U-Pass BC FAQs
What is U-Pass BC?
U-Pass BC is a universal transit program offered by Douglas College in partnership with the Douglas Students’ Union (DSU), TransLink and the Province of British Columbia. U-Pass BC provides affordable access to public transit in Metro Vancouver for eligible students. A number of post-secondary institutions have joined the program.
Douglas College students have participated in the U-Pass BC program since September 2011. The original agreement was set to expire in the spring of 2013. In January 2013, the DSU held a U-Pass BC referendum to see if students wanted to renew the agreement. As a result, 87% of students supported the renewed U-Pass BC agreement.
What does U-Pass BC get me?
U-Pass BC provides unlimited, all-zone access to TransLink bus, SkyTrain and SeaBus services, as well as discounts on the West Coast Express.
In addition to providing you with low-cost travel, U-Pass BC encourages you to make transit part of your lifestyle, which helps reduce greenhouse gasses while creating a sustainable transit program.
How much is the U-Pass BC?
The monthly U-Pass rates are:
May 2013 - April 2014: $35
May 2014 - April 2015: $36.75
May 2015 - April 2016: $38
The cost per semester for eligible students varies depending on program length.
How do I pay for my U-Pass BC?
After you have registered for your courses, our system will charge your account with the applicable fees for U-Pass BC. All outstanding fees (including U-Pass BC fees) are due by the Fee Payment Deadline each semester. All fees associated with registration for the current term must be paid in full, or a fee deferral submitted, before you can get your U-Pass BC.
When and where do I get my U-Pass BC?
U-Pass BC dispensing machines are located at each campus. You will be issued one U-Pass BC per month. Your U-Pass BC is available at noon on the 17th of each month prior to its activation date. The last day to get your U-Pass BC from the dispensing machine for each month is the 16th.
For example, your May U-Pass BC will be available at noon on April 17th until May 16th. At noon on May 17th the machines will begin dispensing passes for June. Remember to get your U-Pass BC BEFORE the dispensing machines change over to the next month.
NOTE: If the 17th falls on a statutory holiday or on a weekend, the next month’s U-Pass BC will be available on the next business day.
Who is eligible for U-Pass BC?
All students registered in a minimum of 3 credits and who are paying student union fees are required to participate in the program (regardless of whether you live in or outside of Metro Vancouver).
Students registered in ESL courses (any level) and have 12 hours of instructional class time per week are required to participate in the program.
Math and English upgrading courses (MATU/ENGU levels 3 and 4) are also required to participate in the program if the courses are 12 instructional hours per week or more. Students registered in Upgrading courses level 1 or 2 and Upgrading courses level 3 and 4 are included in the U-Pass BC program if all of the courses total 12 instructional hours per week or more.
If a student is registered in an ESL course (any level) and an upgrading course (MATU/ENGU any level) they may also be eligible for U-Pass if they have 12 instructional hours per week or more.
NOTE: To get your U-Pass BC, you must have a current student ID card. Your student ID card can be issued only if you have paid your fees in full.
For more information on getting ID cards issued, see ID Cards and Badges.
Who is not eligible for U-Pass BC?
- students taking online courses only
- non-credit students (Continuing Education and Training Group)
- outgoing exchange and field school students
- students only registered in levels 1 and 2 Math and English upgrading courses (MATU/ENGU)
If I’m not eligible, can I opt in to the U-Pass BC program?
No. Students who are not eligible (e.g., Continuing Education students) will not be able to opt in to the U-Pass BC program.
Can I opt out of the U-Pass BC program?
No. All eligible students are required to participate. Exemptions will be granted if you hold a transit pass that is valid for the duration of the U-Pass BC term.
You may also be exempt if you have a documented physical or psychological condition that prevents you from using public transit, or if you have already purchased a U-Pass BC from another post-secondary institution.
If you fall into one of these categories, you will need to complete an exemption form. Email email@example.com for details or call 604 527 5770.
NOTE: Exemption deadline for the the Spring semester is March 14, 2014. The deadline for Winter 2014 semester has passed. Forms submitted past the deadline will not be processed. (Important: do not collect your U-Pass BC if you are submitting a request for exemption.)
- U-Pass BC Exemption Form
Fill out if you hold a transit pass that is valid for the duration of the U-Pass BC program or you have a U-Pass BC from another post-secondary institution in the Lower Mainland.
- U-Pass BC Medical Exemption Form
Fill out if you have a documented physical or psychological condition that prevents you from using transit.
Is U-Pass BC mandatory?
Yes, the program is mandatory. The referendum was based on having a mandatory U-Pass BC for all eligible students, with no option of opting out. A referendum to renew the agreement was held in January 2013 with 87% of students voting to renew the U-Pass BC.
What if I lose my U-Pass BC or my Douglas College Student ID?
If you lose your U-Pass BC, it cannot be replaced. If you lose your Douglas College student ID, it is your responsibility to report this immediately to the Finance Department by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 604 527 5770.
If your U-Pass BC has been stolen, you must submit documentation containing a police report file number to the Finance Department.
NOTE: It is a condition of use for the U-Pass BC program that U-Pass BC holders also present their Douglas College student card while travelling on transit.
If I drop my classes, can I get my money back for my U-Pass BC?
If you drop your classes, you will be issued a refund once you have returned your U-Pass BC to Douglas College. It’s important to note that the amount refunded for your U-Pass BC will be based on the date you return the pass. In order to receive a full refund, your U-Pass BC must be returned prior to the activation date. Once your U-Pass BC becomes active, refunds will not be issued for the current month or previous months.
Important information about your U-Pass BC
The U-Pass BC remains the property of TransLink at all times. You must print your name on the back of your U-Pass BC. When using transit, you must always carry your student ID card with your U-Pass BC. Failure to present both your U-Pass BC and Douglas College student ID when using transit may result in confiscation of U-Pass BC and additional fines may be charged by TransLink. Your U-Pass BC is non-transferable, and only you as an eligible student holding a Douglas College student ID card are entitled to use it.
If you give or sell your U-Pass BC to another person, or use a U-Pass BC that you are not entitled to, you are committing fare fraud. Students committing fare fraud will have their U-Pass BC confiscated and may be charged additional fines by TransLink.
What if I have more questions?
You can contact us at email@example.com or 604 527 5770.