Students board trolley
UC San Diego students board a Blue Line trolley at the UC San Diego station. Photo by Chris Jennewein

People across San Diego County can celebrate California Clean Air Day by taking transit on Wednesday, with all buses, trolleys and Coaster and Sprinter trains free to ride all day.

The event is the region’s sixth edition of Free Ride Day, and the Metropolitan Transit System, North County Transit District and SANDAG have partnered to provide the free transportation.

“Conserving our planet is a priority for all of us. Initiatives like Free Ride Day provide an opportunity for residents to reduce carbon emissions and promote sustainability by riding clean transportation options,” said Stephen Whitburn, MTS board chair and San Diego city councilman.

“And with record-high gas prices, taking transit not only helps the environment, it can help your wallet too,” he said.

MTS had created a cost calculator to help riders determine how much they could save by taking public transit.

The transit agency will hold pop-up outreach events at major transit centers in the morning from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and the afternoon from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. to thank riders for choosing transit. Riders can stop by for transit information and promotional items and enter to win a Free Ride Day giveaway

“We live in a state with some of the worst air pollution in the country. Take a break from traffic and pollution — instead, take action and experience a day of emissions-free travel on a bus or train for free,” said NCTD Board Member and Vista Councilwoman Corinna Contreras.

“Riding the COASTER or SPRINTER train, or BREEZE bus decreases greenhouse gas emissions and reduces air pollutants in the San Diego region. A benefit for us all,” she said.

For more information on Clean Air Day and for discounts with other transportation providers, visit

City News Service contributed to this article.

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.