Ceremonial first trolley departure
An Orange Line trolley departs from the courthouse station downtown. Courtesy MTS

San Diego’s Metropolitan Transit System and the North County Transit District announced Wednesday that the second annual Free Ride Day is set for Oct. 2 — a Wednesday.

Residents will be able to ride MTS trolley and fixed-route bus lines and the NCTD Sprinter and Coaster for free during the event, which is supported by all cities throughout the county. Free Ride Day is also part of the San Diego Association of Governments’ Rideshare Week, a campaign to encourage county residents to choose public transit.

“Last year, MTS logged 53,000 extra passenger trips on Free Ride Day and the Sycuan Green Line Trolley’s ridership spiked 37 percent,” said MTS CEO Paul Jablonski. “We want even more residents this year to try it out and experience the thriving network of transportation options in San Diego.”

All MTS and NCTD routes will operate on their normal weekday schedules during the event, according to the two agencies. Residents are advised to RSVP at sdmts.com/free-ride-day if they plan on using public transit during Free Ride Day to receive reminders and public transit tips.

“We encourage all single riders to consider giving carpool, vanpool, or transit a try during Rideshare Week,” said SANDAG Vice Chair and Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear. “Making the change even one day a week will take cars off the road and increase sustainability and quality of life in the San Diego region.”

Rideshare Week is Sept. 30 to Oct. 4. Residents who choose public transit during the week will be eligible for special sale offers like $1 off Waze Carpool rides and the chance to win SANDAG’s social media contest on the iCommute San Diego Facebook page.

— City News Service