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PRESTO & HSR

PRESTO Logo Hamilton Street Railway customers are now able to enjoy the ease of using PRESTO!
..an electronic single fare card system for transit travels in Hamilton and area systems.

News:
  • May 2013 - A better PRESTO Site is coming soon.  The site will have limited functionality between May 31st and June 2nd.  Visit www.prestocard.ca for more information.
  • May 2011 - The PRESTO smart card fare system is now available on all HSR buses!
  • May 2011 - A printable version of PRESTO and HSR Frequently Asked Questions can be found here.
What you need to know about PRESTO and the HSR:

Have a look through the following Frequently Asked Questions about using PRESTO and how it works with the HSR.  Additional Frequently Asked Questions, not specific to HSR, can be found on the PRESTO website.

  1. What is PRESTO?
  2. How does the PRESTO card work?
  3. How do I purchase a PRESTO card?
  4. Will the PRESTO card work for all fares?
  5. Do I have to register my card?
  6. How do transfers work with the PRESTO System?
  7. Can a Presto HSR customer transfer to a Burlington Transit bus?
  8. How will fares work when I transfer to GO Transit?
  9. How do I load value onto my PRESTO card?
  10. Where can I get more information or send feedback?

1. What is PRESTO?

PRESTO is an electronic fare system that will allow transit users in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area to use a single fare card to move between and within the following transit systems - HSR, GO Transit, Brampton Transit, Burlington Transit, Durham Region Transit, Mississauga Transit (MiWay), Oakville Transit, OC Transpo, York Region Transit and Toronto Transit Commission.

2. How does the PRESTO card work?

Using the card is easy. Every time you ride the bus you tap your card on the Fare Payment Device located at the door. The computer chip in your card communicates with the card reader on the buses. The system calculates the correct fare for your trip, and deducts the fare from the balance stored on your card. The system also recognizes if you are travelling with a valid HSR bus pass and deducts nothing – all in less than a second.

3. How do I purchase a PRESTO card?

The PRESTO card carries a large amount of technology and has an initial nominal fee to the rider of $6.00. You may purchase a card in person at HSR Ticket Office, 36 Hunter Street East, order on-line at: www.prestocard.ca or call 1-8-PRESTO-123 (1-877-378-6123).

4. Will the PRESTO card work for all fares?

PRESTO will work for Adult ticket price, Adult monthly pass, Student ticket price, Student monthly pass and Senior annual pass. The fare structure will continue to be set and approved by Council.

5. Do I have to register my card?

In order to receive a concession fare (Student or Senior), your card must be registered; as well you will need to provide identification when boarding the bus to validate the fare price.

It is recommended that all cards be registered in order to be protected if the card is lost or stolen and to provide the necessary reports to claim the Federal Public Transit non-refundable tax credit.

6. How do transfers work with the PRESTO System?

The transfer window is set to two hours from the time of boarding. When you tap on to the Fare Payment Device as you board, the system will write a transfer to your card, therefore a paper transfer is no longer required. When you tap on to the next bus the system will recognize the transfer and no fare will be deducted.

7. Can a Presto HSR customer transfer to a Burlington Transit bus?

Yes. Travel between HSR and Burlington Transit will remain the same. Burlington Transit will recognize the transfer written to your card, no additional fare will be deducted.

8. How will fares work when I transfer to GO Transit?

The co-fare and fare subsidy will be applied on a trip specific basis. The card will calculate and deduct the appropriate discount for the local trip to or from an activated GO Train station. A discount of a $1.50 will be applied when you transfer to the next portion of your trip. For example, when you travel on HSR and transfer to the GO Train, the fare you pay GO will be reduced by $1.50.

9. How do I load value onto my PRESTO card?

The value loaded on your card must be in increments of $10.00. The minimum initial load and each reload must be at least $10.00.

In person - At HSR Ticket Office, 36 Hunter Street East. Cash and debit accepted. Please note that HSR monthly passes can only be loaded in person at the HSR Ticket Office.

At www.prestocard.ca - Visit: www.prestocard.ca to check out the many on-line options, including automatic reload. You may only use a credit card with this option. Only e-purse value can be loaded on-line.

The PRESTO Call Centre - Call 1-8-PRESTO-123 (1-877-378-6123) and a PRESTO representative will be happy to assist you with card loading and payment options by telephone. You may only use a credit card with this option. Only e-purse value can be loaded by phone.

E-purse loads done through the PRESTO Call Centre or website may take up to 24 hours to be processed. The load will update on your card once you tap on to a Fare Payment Device or Balance Checker device.

10. Where can I get more information or send feedback?

Please check out the PRESTO website at: www.prestocard.ca or call 1-8-PRESTO-123 (1-877-378-6123).

Thank you for taking transit and riding the HSR!