ALERT: The Wave smart fare system will be undergoing routine maintenance on Thursday, October 28, 2021 from 6am to approximately 10am. Reloading and the purchase of fare products in the mobile app, online and at third party retailers will be unavailable during that time. Please note, you may see a user error on the app or when tapping/scanning onboard at the Wave reader.

ALERT: Due to the current COVID-19 public health crisis, many RIPTA Offices and transit centers are closed. Details >>


Welcome to Wave – RIPTA’s new smart fare collection system!

You now pay your bus fare using either a Wave smart card OR the Wave mobile app.

The Wave smart card is a permanent, rechargeable card used to pay your bus fare that you can easily manage online. It is plastic and embedded with a special computer chip that keeps track of the value of the card.

The Wave mobile app lets you quickly buy bus fares on your phone.  When ready to board the bus, open the app, and scan it under the validator.

Once you add value to your Wave account, the Wave reader will deduct $2 from your stored balance when you tap your card or scan your app when you board. The $2 fare entitles you to one hour of unlimited rides!

What are the benefits of Wave?

  • Pay only $2 for ONE HOUR of unlimited rides!
  • Earn As You Go – You no longer have to purchase a Day Pass or Monthly Pass upfront. Each ride gets you closer to earning a Day or Monthly Pass.
  • Set up Auto Reload option. This feature allows you to set up Stored Value or pass products to automatically reload to your Wave when your Stored Value runs low. You choose how much Stored Value or which pass product you want to set up to Auto Reload.
  • You never have to remember exact change. The fare amount is deducted from the stored value every time you ride.
  • Secure ticket purchasing with your credit or debit card.
  • Never lose your fare! Account balance and passes can be easily transferred if your registered Wave smart card or your phone is lost or stolen.
  • More durable than traditional paper passes.
  • Board the bus faster.

What should I do with my unused paper fare products?

You can transfer the value over to your new Wave card by filling out this form and then mailing your unused fare products to RIPTA.

Can I still buy paper fare products? As part of our transition to Wave, RIPTA is discontinuing the sales of paper fare products online and onboard.

Can I use pretax dollars for my Wave pass? Yes, if your employer deducts the cost of a bus pass from your paycheck pre-tax, we can arrange that with your employer.

When will RIPTA stop accepting paper fare products for payment? As of December 31, 2021, RIPTA will no longer accept paper fare products for payment. Passengers must either pay with Wave or Exact Change.  Inserting more than the fare will no longer generate a Change Card.  

What other changes go into effect on December 31, 2021? Transfers are eliminated for passengers paying with cash. 

Payment with Wave includes one hour of unlimited rides. Change Cards are eliminated.

Exact Change Only goes into effect.

Can I pay my fare with a paper fare product? Yes, RIPTA will continue to accept paper fare products on board through December 31, 2021. We highly recommend transferring the value of your paper fare products over to Wave so you can enjoy all the benefits it offers.

Click here to exchange your fare products.  

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