Anyone 18 and under can now ride transit for free through the SANDAG Youth Opportunity Pass pilot program. Use these three easy steps to get unlimited rides on the bus, Trolley, COASTER, and SPRINTER:
- Download the free PRONTO app and create an account. Go to the “Manage” tab to find your card account number. Then, fill out this online form or call PRONTO Support at 619-595-5636 to convert your account from Adult to Youth.
- If you don’t have a smartphone, pick up a pre-activated PRONTO Youth card at a school, participating community organization, or MTS or NCTD customer service center.
- Please note: Children five and under ride MTS and NCTD free at all times and do not need a PRONTO card or app account.
- Use the 'Next Departure' and 'Trip Planner' tools in the PRONTO app to plan your trip and learn when buses near you are coming. We also recommend Google Maps or the OneBusAway app to help plan your trip on your smartphone to plan your trip
- You can also visit MTS and NCTD to build your route and find the closest transit station
- Plan to arrive at the transit station/stop a few minutes before the listed time on the schedule
- Remember to scan your app or tap your card every time you ride, including transfers
- Don’t forget to ride with proof of your age. This can be a current year school picture ID; a government photo ID with your birthday (i.e., driver’s license or real ID), or birth certificate
SANDAG has teamed up with MTS, NCTD, and the County of San Diego to connect young people to more opportunities through these free transit passes. The Youth Opportunity Pass is funded by SANDAG as part of its Transit Equity Pilot, a program to make transit more accessible for everyone.
Adults Who Work with Youth and Families
Do you work for a school or community organization? You can request a bulk order of PRONTO Youth Passes*. We’ll mail them to you pre-activated. Remember: these are NOT monthly or daily passes. Youth Opportunity Passes are good for unlimited rides for as long as the program continues.
Taking students on a field trip?
- Physical PRONTO youth passes don’t have to be registered to a particular young person, so you can reuse them for multiple groups of students on different days.
- Adult chaperones and school staff can ride transit using the PRONTO smartphone app, pay cash, or pick up a physical pass anywhere they are sold.
- We recommend taking groups of 20-30 maximum on transit at a time to be respectful of other passengers.
- After the trip, we encourage you to collect your passes back and distribute to families who will use them more regularly.
*Are you 18 or under and need a pass? Ask your school’s front office! Many schools across the county already have passes on site.
If you have any questions about this program, please email us at YouthOpportunityPass@sandag.org.