OC Transpo Resources and Information

Last Updated on: 10th January 2023, 02:04 pm

Students New to OC Transpo

This September, many grade 7-12 students will be assigned to take OC Transpo to school. OC Transpo is a convenient option for students, allowing them the freedom to use their free Presto School Board Card for extra-curricular activities, commitments or attending part-time jobs. OC Transpo has been working with OSTA to prepare routes to accommodate the number of students expected to ride this year. 

A free Presto School Board Pass valid from September to June 30th will be issued to eligible students. Students will be notified by their school at the beginning of September when their Presto cards are available for pick up.

For information on taking public transit for first-time riders, please visit our Public Transit Information Page. We recommend families visit plan.octranspo.com/plan before the upcoming school year for exact bus stop locations and times nearest to their homes. Please make sure to enter the first day of school (September 6) to see an accurate schedule specific to your school. It is also recommended to use the “Arrive By” Time for the morning run to ensure students arrive at school on time. For afternoon runs, select “Depart At” – Please note that the time is displayed in 24-hour format (14:30h = 2:30 pm). Students are also encouraged to practice taking OC Transpo before the beginning of the school year to help guarantee a smooth transition. 

To help new riders transition to OC Transpo, OSTA and OC Transpo have developed additional resources on our website, including a helpful video and an FAQ to help guide those new to public transit.

Grace Period

OC Transpo has also advised its bus drivers to allow students to embark on buses without paying fares or showing Presto cards on the first day of school. Students are not required to show identification but may be asked to confirm they are students verbally.  

This will allow students to attend school while school staff organize Presto cards for distribution to students.

Registering the PRESTO Cards

Students should register their cards to protect the balance if lost, stolen or damaged. Registration allows students to get a replacement card quickly and transfer any remaining balance (school board pass).

It’s easy to do at prestocard.ca. For information on registering your card, please visit our website for new and returning students.

Returning students who registered their cards last year can log into their existing account and add the new card. To add it, log into their account, click on the drop-down in the webpage’s upper right corner and select “Add an Existing Card.”

Safety on OC Transpo

OC Transpo implemented health and safety measures in close consultation with Ottawa Public Health and aligned with provincial and federal guidelines. For more information on how OC Transpo is keeping its riders safe, visit OC Transpo’s website.