Madison Metro Bus Pass

Degree credit students taking at least one on-site class at Madison campuses are eligible for an unlimited ride bus pass. Pick up your bus pass at the Student Life Office at Truax (room B1260) or Goodman South (room 109) campuses. Students are required to be currently enrolled in degree credit courses to qualify for the free bus pass as this program is funded by student fees. If you are a non-degree credit student you may purchase a commuter bus pass for $50 (fall and spring semesters) at the Truax Campus Bookstore  or the Goodman South campus front desk. For summer bus passes the charge is $35 because the semester is shorter than the fall and spring. 

The City of Madison operates a fleet of 200 buses that serve Madison and eight suburban communities. Learn more about Metro services including routes and schedules, mobile apps, and more.

Get a Bus Pass

Getting Your Bus Pass

Summer 2022 bus passes are now available for pickup in person at the Truax and Goodman South campuses. These passes are valid from May 9th, 2022 through August 23rd, 2022. Students who are taking non-degree classes OR registered for all online classes may purchase a bus pass for the summer 2022 semester. The cost is $35, which may be paid at the Truax Campus Bookstore or the Goodman South front desk during open hours.

Lost Bus Pass

Obtaining a New Bus Pass

Students may report a lost, stolen, damaged or malfunctioning bus pass in the following Madison College locations:        

Goodman South Campus 
Student Life Office | Room 109 | 608.606.1771

Front Desk | Room 105A | 608.243.4200

Truax Campus
Student Life Office | Room B1260 | 608.246.6224       

There is no charge for replacement of a lost or stolen bus pass. Madison College students may receive one bus pass replacement per semester. As soon as a bus pass is reported lost or stolen, it is deactivated in the system and can no longer be used.

Students who lose their replacement bus pass will need to purchase future ride passes from Metro Transit.


Authorized Users

Only the student to whom the pass was issued may use the pass to ride a Metro Transit bus or to gain access to the Para-Transit services. Bus passes are not to be loaned, given, traded, sold or gifted to any other person. Madison College bus passes are not transferable, nor are they redeemable for cash. Bus passes are subject to confiscation if misused and students may be subject to conduct action and/or criminal charges.

Faculty and Staff Are Not Eligible

Faculty, staff and administrators from Madison College are not eligible to get a bus pass through the Commuter Services Program, unless they are also enrolled and taking a degree credit course or courses. As such, he or she would also be charged the commuter service fee. The program has been developed and funded by students for students. Faculty and staff have repeatedly been encouraged to work through their union to develop a bus-rider program for employees.

OneCard Required But Not Sufficient

You must have both a bus pass and a OneCard. The current Metro Transit reader system isn’t capable of reading Madison College OneCards. Future technologies may be compatible. Many citizens have been students or staff and still have their OneCards. Only currently enrolled students, who pay for the program, should ride the buses. Metro Transit charges “by-the-ride.” The Student Senate wants to be sure to only pay for rides by students who are eligible to ride. 

Students must show their Madison College OneCard ID if asked to do so by a Metro Transit driver. Students may be refused service if unable to show a valid OneCard upon request. Routes 80, 81, 82, 84 and 85 near the UW–Madison are free to all and nobody needs to show ID.

New Bus Pass Required Each Semester

Madison College students who are enrolled in at least one degree-credit class are eligible to receive a bus pass. Active enrollment signifies eligibility for a bus pass and insures that the only students who ride are those who are paying for the service via their commuter services fee.

Passes are valid for the semester or summer in which the student is enrolled. Valid dates for use are printed on the front of each bus pass. If a student drops their classes part way through a semester, they are no longer eligible to utilize the bus pass.

Write Your Name and ID Number on Pass

A lost bus pass can only be returned if its owner is known.  If there is no name and Madison College OneCard ID number on the pass, there is no way to return a lost pass, even though a Good Samaritan has turned in the pass to a Madison College office. Signing the bus pass also insures that the pass can only be used by the student to whom it was issued. Persons unable to produce a matching Madison College OneCard ID along with the bus pass will have the pass confiscated, and the student to whom the pass was originally issued may be held responsible through the Madison College student conduct process.

Program Benefits Even Nonusers

Even though you may not be a bus or shuttle rider, you will benefit from less congestion of vehicles and pedestrians in Madison College parking lots and the city parking structures. Likewise, you will experience a reduction of traffic stresses within the City of Madison and communities served by Metro Transit. Just imagine competing for limited parking spaces with thousands more students!  The money you pay into the system will support the continuance of the Bus and Para-Transit Program and the Shuttle Program.

Tips for Bus Riders

Where to Get Route and Schedule Information

Go to the Metro Transit website to find up-to-date information about routes, schedules, transfer locations, park-and-ride locations, the rank-n-roll system for bikes, changes in routes and schedules, etc. The website includes an interactive feature called “How To Ride – Trip Planner,” which allows you to input the location from which you wish to depart and the location to which you want travel. The system will then inform you of locations and times for your trip(s). Students may also pick up copies of the Metro System Map and the Ride Guide at various locations on and off campus.

Help for New Users

Metro Transit has many online riding tips as well as an online “How To Ride – Trip Planner” on the City of Madison Metro Transit website. The trip planner is available 24/7 and informs you of departure and arrival locations and times, as well as transfer information. We also encourage you to speak to other students who are experienced bus riders. They are usually happy to share tips to better use the transportation system. Another excellent resource is using the Google Maps bus feature. You can input your destination into Google Maps and then select the bus option to see the various routes available to you. 

Please speak with representatives from the Madison College Student Senate if you have any issues or suggestions. The Student Senate is located in Truax room B1260H, you can also call 608.246.6107 or e-mail