Universal Pass Program (UPass)

The UPass program is an exclusive agreement between Calgary Transit and the post secondary institutions listed below.

A universal transit pass is currently available for post secondary students at five major schools. The UPass allows students at these institutions to pay a much lower fare based on a four-month semester transit pass. “UPass” was established in 2001 and is a contractual agreement between the post secondary school and Calgary Transit. The premise of UPass is that Calgary Transit will collect the same amount of fare revenue from a universal charge to all students as it would if individual students were to purchase an adult monthly pass.

The price of the UPass has been determined through ridership counts and surveys to determine the percentage of students travelling to each school via transit. An estimate is then made of the annual revenue that would come from this usage and this amount is then shared among the entire student body. To be eligible, all students must contribute to the program and it is recognized that not all students use transit for school travel.

Initially, the universal pass price was voted on by each student body. Subsequent pass prices have been negotiated with the administration of each school. Currently the UPass is available to students at the University of Calgary, SAIT, Alberta College of Art, Mount Royal University and Saint Mary's University College and is based on approximately 30% student use of transit for school travel. Surveys have also found that there is a much higher use of transit for other types of travel by these students. SAIT has extended the UPass to staff on the basis that, similar to students, all staff pay into the program. UPass is advantageous to post secondary schools as a means of encouraging the use of transit and reducing auto access to schools thereby reducing costs for parking.  UPass has not been offered to small schools or schools with less than 1,000 students or those with very high transit use among students.

How the Program Works

UPass programs require an identification card with the participant’s picture. Once the Upass fee has been paid, the Institution (often the Registrar’s office) will affix a sticker onto the identification card. This card now becomes your transit fare medium. Simply show your card with valid sticker to the bus driver or the Protective Services Officers if on the CTrain.

UPass use is not restricted to the day or time it can be used.  The UPass provides unlimited rides.

Schools In The Program

The following post-secondary institutions are participating in the universal pass program for the
Fall of 2014, indicated by a red sticker:

Institution Start Date End Date
ACAD (Alberta College of Arts and Design) 2014 September 01

2014 December 31

Mount Royal University 2014 September 01

2014 December 31

St. Mary's University 2014 September 01

2014 December 31

SAIT (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology) 2014 September 01

2014 December 31

University of Calgary 2014 September 01

2014 December 31

Conditions of Use:

The participant's identification card with valid UPass sticker MUST be carried at all times when riding Calgary Transit and must be presented to the bus operator when boarding the bus or to Protective Services Officers on request while riding the CTrain.

The UPass is not transferable and may only be used by the participant whose name and photo appear on the identification card.

The UPass participant is responsible for knowing the effective dates of their program and to ensure that they have a valid identification card with sticker on their possession.

Information on valid dates is available on campus advertising or the institution's web-site. If you have any questions, you should contact the Registrar's office at your institution.

City of Calgary - Transportation Department - Calgary Transit
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