Clipper START Means-Based Discount Fare Program


Clipper START Pilot Program

In May 2018, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) adopted Resolution No. 4320, establishing the framework for a Means Based Transit Fare program to offer discounted transit rides to eligible low-income adults on select transit systems in the Bay Area during a pilot period of 12 to 18 months. MTC launched the initial phase of the pilot program on July 15, 2020 with participation of BART, Caltrain, Golden Gate Transit Bus and Ferry, and SFMTA. The pilot program is referred to as Clipper START, and the discount is available to eligible riders who use the Clipper electronic fare payment system to pay their fare.

In August 2020, Metropolitan Transportation Commission approved expanding the Clipper START program to all transit operators that accept Clipper. Marin County Transit District's Board of Directors approved Marin Transit to explore participation in the region’s means-based transit fare pilot program, to offer a 50% discount on the adult cash fare to eligible low-income riders with household incomes of 200 percent of the federal poverty level or lower. The 50% discount is consistent with Golden Gate Transit and SMART’s 50% Clipper START discount and will provide a coordinated Marin County fare policy for local and regional riders. The Clipper START pilot program is scheduled to launch in Marin County in November 2020. For more information on the Clipper START program please visit:

In compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Marin Transit staff conducted Title VI Fare Equity Analysis to evaluate the proposed fare change under the Clipper START program and completed a public engagement process. The equity analysis demonstrated that the Clipper START discount fare proposal will not result in a disparate impact or a disproportionate burden for minority, or on low-income riders, and in fact the 50% Clipper START discount will substantially benefit those populations. A public hearing was held before the Marin County Transit Board of Directors on Monday, October 5, 2020 and the Board approved Marin Transit to participate in the Clipper START means-based transit fare pilot program and offer a 50 percent discount off the adult cash fare to eligible low-income adult riders.