Compass Notes – Getting a Card and the October 5th Confusion

So we’re finally here in October 2015. I’ve already got my Compass Card and loaded it with a 1-zone monthly pass. I get to use the full version of this Compass Card for the first time today. That’s exciting for a transit geek like me. So you might be wondering how I got my Compass Card when it’s not readily available. Also what’s with this October 5th thing I keep hearing about?

image from askcompass.ca

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Compass Notes – Compass Card now available to the public

After a two-year wait, it’s finally here in my hands. A real, functioning Compass Card. The new smart cards for use on all TransLink vehicles is available to the general public. I had my taste of the Compass Card 2 years ago as a beta tester, but now I can finally say goodbye to my monthly paper FareCard and to those paper FareSavers that go missing oh so easily.

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October 2015 – Compass Card and Zone-free Bus Rides

credit: TransLink

Last Thursday, TransLink announced a big move ahead in the Compass Card and new zone-free bus rides for October. Here’s what the Buzzer Blog has to say:

By late October, Compass Cards will be available to the general public to buy for use on all transit services — just in time for monthly pass holders to load November’s month pass on their Compass Card!

After this date, Compass Cards will be available from CVMs, by mail, online, phone request and in person at the Compass retailer network or Compass walk-in centres.

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Getting Around Sapporo – Japan Rail (JR)

In Japan, Japan Rail (JR) is a name that can be found across the country. It comes in many flavours. There’s the green JR East that most people will see in Tokyo, the blue JR West found in Kansai townships, the orange JR Central that serves everything between Kanto and Kansai regions, and more. In Hokkaido, there is the light green manifestation of JR known as JR Hokkaido.

In Sapporo, almost all the JR trains must go through Sapporo Station. This is probably the busiest train station in all of Hokkaido seeing about 90,000 passengers a day go through its doors. If you walk through the station around 6pm, you will feel the rush of 90,000 passengers a day.

If one must get to destinations beyond Sapporo or outside of the subway system, then JR is one way to do it. You can think of JR as a commuter rail system serving the “suburbs” of Sapporo. JR Hokkaido is more than just a suburban commuter rail, but for the purpose of getting around the outer areas of Sapporo, that’s the closest description that matches its services.

Sapporo JR Lines Map

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Compass Gates and Bus Transfer Tickets

It looks like the blogosphere and twittersphere are happily talking about today’s article in the 24 Hours Vancouver about the bus tickets not being accepted at SkyTrain stations once the Compass Card is fully implemented. It looks that may be the case.  The bus drivers union is definitely afraid of the backlash that their members may face as cash-paying transit riders will be complaining about … Continue reading Compass Gates and Bus Transfer Tickets

Getting Around Boston – Fares on the T

Your basic ride on the T involves paying $2 at a Ticket Vending Machine at subway stations.  You get a CharlieTicket that you use to get through the fare gates.  Slide the CharlieTicket into the ticket slot.  The gate will read your card and spit it back out on top of the machine for you to collect.  The gates will then open up for you … Continue reading Getting Around Boston – Fares on the T