The Compass Card Snafu

Compass Card and Faresavers
One of these things is not like the other.

Update: While I still found the entire experience frustrating Translink has updated there website to mention the Sea Island Add a Fare on the Compass Card page.

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I had a frustrating experience with the Compass Card recently.

Translink promotes and markets the card just to be like FareSaver tickets. Which I have used for years. So when I set up my card I was told by Translink Staff that yes putting an amount on the card would be just the same as a FareSaver ticket.

But there is one place this isn’t true: Sea Island and YVR and to be fair to Translink they do mention this on there Canada Line YVR AddFare page. But these passes are not FareSaver tickets then. Which is horrible marketing on the part of translink. Other then the specific AddFare page on Translink’s website there is little to no mention of this change on any other page.  I brought this to the attention of Translink and when I checked the website on December 15th, 2015 Translink has changed the verbiage to read and I quote:

Compass Cards can be loaded with the fare product of your choice including Monthly Passes, DayPasses and Stored Value. Travelling with Stored Value gives you the same rate as FareSavers and allows you to pay-as-you-go. Please note, the $5 Canada Line YVR AddFare is applied to Stored Value trips departing Sea Island and continuing to Bridgeport and beyond.

~ Translink 

The AddFare Zone is not new either. It’s been around since the opening of the line in 2009. But those who used the FareSavers were exempt from the extra fare and you still are if you use the paper ticket.

I went to a movie with my friend Rebecca and she asked me if she could drop me off at the Templeton station beside the McArthurGlen Vancouver Outlet mall. I said sure.

On our way we passed the Bridgeport Station and drove the extra 1.5km to the Templeton Station. In doing that we crossed into the AddFare Zone and I added $5 to my fair. Which came to a total of $7.10 from Richmond to Downtown Vancouver.

I was shocked, very annoyed and felt Translink had wronged me because “hey my FareSaver tickets never did this to me. They told me this was the same. It’s not.”

I understand that Translink wants to charge more to the Airport. Cities all over  do the same thing. I have no problem paying more to go to the Airport, it’s very convenient. But I wasn’t going to or coming from the Airport. I wasn’t going out of my way to use this station.

So if you don’t have a monthly pass or a UPass and want to go to the new McArthurGlen Vancouver Outlet mall, Iona Beach Regional Park get ready to pay $5 more for leaving the island.

Only those with:

  • Monthly Pass holders
  • Program pass holders
  • Customers travelling with FareSaver tickets
  • Customers using DayPasses not purchased on Sea Island
  • Customers using single-use Compass Tickets not purchased on Sea Island
  • Customers travelling between Sea Island stations

Anyone else is completely out of luck and as Translink phases out the paper FareSaver tickets in 2016 you’ll be charge a lot more to go anywhere on Sea Island.

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