RideSponsors Help Employees Cut Transportation Costs
When your company signs on as a METRO RideSponsor, you will be able to manage METRO Q® Fare Cards for employees while taking advantage of tax benefits associated with employee transit programs and payroll deductions for transit fares. This helps your employees save money with the added convenience of having an employer transportation program managed at their worksite. We'll work to create a program that's as much a benefit to your employees as it is to your business.
METRO offers many different bus routes, Transit Centers, plus convenient Park & Ride locations featuring direct connections to Downtown, Uptown/Galleria, Greenway, the Texas Medical Center and more. So, whether your business is Uptown, Downtown or at the edge of town, METRO's bus service moves your employees quickly and safely.
If you need further information about the METRO RideSponsor program, direct your email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
RideSponsors FAQs (FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS)
- What is the cost of the METRO Q® Fare Card? What about replacement cards?
The initial cards will be provided free of charge. The first replacements for a lost card is free, a $10 charge applies to subsequent replacements for the same card. Value remaining on a lost card can be transferred to the replacement card.
- How will the $ value be added to the cards?
RideSponsors have the ability to manage employees’ METRO Q® Fare Cards via the Web by submitting automatic subscriptions or by manually placing monthly orders. Cardholders can load value to their METRO Q® Fare Card at participating retailers, the METRO RideStore, at Bus On-Board Reloaders, at credit card machines located at Park & Rides and at Ticket Vending Machines located on all METRORail platforms.
- "As a RideSponsor account that pays for rides, can we control what is being loaded on the cards?"
Yes. The RideSponsor can make it a company policy that the cards are company property and employees would need a separate card for personal use. The RideSponsor can set automatic subscriptions or direct loads via the Web application. Subscriptions and direct loads can be modified at anytime.
- How does a rider with no computer access get their card loaded?
"Riders can load value to their METRO Q® Fare Card at METRO RideStores, most Park & Ride lots, METRO retail locations, all METRORail stations" and by using the Back of the Bus Reloader (BBR) on all local routes.
- One of the benefits of the METRO Q® Fare Card is 5 free trips for every 50 purchased; how can RideSponsor track this?
The RideSponsor cannot view the number of trips taken on an employee's METRO Q® Fare Card. The trip counter is built into the METRO Q® Fare Card.
- Many RideSponsors subsidize transportation costs for their employees; trips are based on zone rates. How do we budget for this based on preloaded amount?
"RideSponsors can add any desired amount to employees METRO Q® Fare Cards monthly. Using the average of 21 working days per month, the costs are as follows:" Local: 52.50, Zone 1: 84.00, Zone 2: 136.50, Zone 3: 157.50, and Zone 4: 189.00.
- Will cards be registered by individual or company? What happens if card is lost or stolen?
Both options are possible. A RideSponsor can request that all cards initially be registered to the company; or they can choose for each employee "to register their own cards. Once the card has been registered, the balance is protected. When a card is reported lost or stolen," it is canceled (hot listed) and a replacement card is issued with the remaining balance.
- What about transfers? How will that work with the METRO Q® Fare Card?
Transfers are automatically built into the METRO Q® allowing a three-hour window from the time of first tap. When traveling between a local route (or light rail) "and a higher cost route such as a Park & Ride, the difference in fare is automatically deducted when you tap your card as you board the second bus."
- Will all RideSponsor issued cards be automatically registered to protect our assets?
"Yes. RideSponsor issued cards are automatically registered to the company, unless the RideSponsor elects to have the cards registered" to their employees.
- Do METRO Q® Fare Cards contain RFID tags?
No. The METRO Q® Fare Card contains two computer chips; one containing the $ value and the other containing trip counter information.
- What is the maximum $ amount that a METRO Q® Fare Card can hold?
"$1000. There are two wallets on each RideSponsor METRO Q® which holds a maximum of $500 per wallet, one for the company and a personal wallet " for the employee.
- How will the METRO Q® Fare Cards be used on the bus?
"All buses and rail platforms are equipped with a Q Box. When the rider taps their card against the Q Box, a green light will flash and" "Welcome Aboard" "will flash across the LCD, along with the remaining balance and the number of trips accumulated."
- How will companies be invoiced?
"As detailed in the RideSponsor METRO Q® Fare Card Sales Agreement, companies will be invoiced for all activity during the first week of every month. Invoices" are payable in full within ten days from the date of the invoice.
- "Will RideSponsors be able to "upload" "rider information into the system initially to minimize the workload?"
Yes. The RideSponsor can provide METRO with specific rider information which will then be loaded into your Web account. See your account representatives for assistance.
- When will RideSponsors get a user ID and password for the Web based software system?
All RideSponsor accounts must sign and return a METRO RideSponsor METRO Q® Fare Card Sales Agreement before a user ID and password can be assigned. "Once the agreement is on file, METRO Revenue will then issue a user ID and password to the RideSponsor."
- Why don’t the invoices show all the loads for the month?
The invoice will only show charges for all cards that were actually reloaded during the month.
- "What does it mean when my cards show " "inactive" "on my Web account?"
"This does not refer to the condition of the card but to the Web function for managing the card. When a card is in" "inactive" "status, this prevents the" "RideSponsor from loading additional funds to the card. The employee must tap their card on the bus or rail for the pending order to load to their card," "which would change the status to" "active," "allowing additional funds to be added if desired."
- Why can't I change the employee ID when I reassign a card?
The employee ID and card serial number fields are non-modifying; this is attributed to the design of the Web. These fields are unique to each employee. When reassigning a card to another employee, the RideSponsor must delete the card from the Web “Employee List” and "Add New Employee".
- How can I change the profile on an employee card? Example: change a full fare card to a senior card?
RideSponsors do not have the capability of changing the profile on an employee card. Profiles can only be changed by METRO Treasury Department.
- I notice that there are various colors of METRO Q® Fare Cards. What does the different colors represent?
METRO has four different colors and styles of METRO Q® Fare Cards. There is absolutely no difference between the different colors.