The launch of LTC’s smart card technology is underway!

The following Q&A’s are provided to answer some of the most commonly asked questions. If you have other questions, please contact us at 519-451-1347 or via email at

 Why is LTC moving to a Smart Card system?
LTC completed a business case assessment for the smart card system, which determined that the $3.7 million investment (fully funded by Provincial Gas Tax) has an expected payback of 8 years, noting in addition to the payback, the system:

ü  provides greater flexibility for the customer in terms of fare options and pricing

ü  lowers/contains fare administration cost – i.e. currently averaging $0.09 per average cash, ticket and monthly pass fare

ü  provides more accurate and timely revenue and ridership counts

ü  links ridership and service data (rides & revenue by time of day, day of week, route)

ü  supports improved boarding time, reducing dwell time at stops

ü  mitigates fare disputes i.e. tendering of appropriate fare and transfer use

 How will the card work?



Simply tap your test card on the card reader located at the front door of the bus. The screen on the reader will display as indicated below.

If  you see a green screen with a checkmark,
your trip has been recorded.

If you see a red screen with an X, your fare has not been tendered.

 When will the system be available to all customers?

The planned phasing steps are set out below, noting subsequent steps will not be initiated until such time as any issues with the current step have been addressed.

  1. Fanshawe students tapping their cards

  2. Issuance of smart cards to the general public for monthly passes

  3. Reloading of monthly passes via internet and at revaluing locations

  4. Issuance of smart cads to the general public for stored value (ticket fares)

  5. Reloading of stored value via internet and at revaluing locations

  6. Western students tapping their student cards

Status to Date:

Effective September 1, 2015, Fanshawe students began tapping their student cards on the smart card readers to record their trip. 

An issue impacting the smart card readers which results in a delay before the next card can be tapped has been identified and is being addressed. Once everything is functioning as expected with the Fanshawe student cards, the phased implementation will proceed.

 What fare products will the Smart Card replace when the system is launched?
The Smart Card fare media will see:

ü  all existing monthly pass fare programs being replicated on Smart Card. The Smart Card passes become transferrable (no photo id), within defined parameters

ü  the tuition-based pass programs integrated with the Smart Card system. The tuition-based pass programs will continue to be non-transferrable

ü  all existing ticket fare programs being replicated on Smart Cards as stored valued cards replacing the paper tickets

ü  the existing 90 minute transfer will be automatically loaded on the Smart Card at time of fare payment so if you tap again within the 90 minute window, no fare will be deducted from your card

 What are some of the other features of the Smart Card system?

ü the system will function with LTC smart cards only, it will not interface with debit or credit cards. This option will be reassessed in the future.

ü the smart cards will be reloadable (revalued)

ü smart card distribution and revaluing will occur at LTC locations and selected number of third party locations

ü the internet can also be used to revalue a smart card

ü debit/credit cards will be accepted at LTC locations for purchase of smart card fare media

 Will paper passes and tickets be phased out immediately when the Smart Card system is launched?
Smart cards will be introduced slowly, allowing LTC customers to make the decision to change from the traditional paper fare media, however at some point in the future, the paper passes and tickets will be phased out. The dates for elimination of paper passes and tickets will be communicated well in advance.  Cash fares will continue to be accepted on all LTC services.
 How will I claim my monthly pass purchase on my income tax without a paper pass as proof?
If a user wishes to claim pass purchases on their income tax, they will need to register their smart card on the Web portal. Once registered, they will have access to the transaction history on their card, which can be printed for tax purposes.
 How will I be able to tell the balance remaining on my card?
The on-board validator will display the remaining balance on your smart card each time you tap. Additionally, you can ask the operator to “query” your card, and you will be able to see the balance at any time. There is also a reminder tone that will play when the balance on your smart card is getting low, or the monthly pass is close to expiry.

Also, if you register your card on the web portal, you will be able to see a transaction history and balance at any time.

 Can the smart card be used on both conventional and specialized services?
Yes, the smart card can be used on both the conventional and specialized services

ü all conventional buses will have fixed smart card readers at the front doors of the bus - customers will tap with their smart card  to record the trip, levy the appropriate fare and apply the 90 minute transfer

ü hand-held readers will be utilized on all specialized vehicles to record the trip, levy the appropriate fare and apply the 90 minute transfer

 What if I lose my smart card?
If a customer registers their card on the web portal, the LTC can replace a lost or stolen card, with the value that was left on the card. If a card is used anonymously (ie not registered), there is no protection to the customer if it is lost or stolen.