Taking transit in Toronto
Toronto is an amazing city, but like any large urban area, does experience congestion in its high-density areas like the downtown. Taking a cab or driving yourself can be quite expensive and often takes just as long or even longer than riding on the transit system. Thankfully, Toronto has a fantastic transit network connecting its most popular neighbourhoods, and travelling by subway, streetcar, and bus has never been easier!
First, download the Toronto Google Map to your smartphone so that you can navigate easily even without access to data.
Enter your destination, then select ‘Directions’ and choose the Transit option (the bus icon) to see how to get there on the public transit system.
Toronto has buses, streetcars, and subways so you’ll want to pay attention to which line you are taking, which will be indicated on the Google Map. Lines 1, 2, and 4 are all part of the subway network, while lines 500 to 512 are streetcars. All other line numbers will be for a bus.
Once you know your route number, you can follow Google Maps to walk you to the nearest stop. Underground subway stops are marked by the Toronto Transit Commission logo:
Finally, you need to pay your fare—but this might be the easiest part! You can use your own credit or debit card or phone payment to tap onto any bus, streetcar, or subway on the network. This means you don’t need to worry about carrying cash or getting a specific transit pass. When you tap your credit or debit card or phone payment on the payment readers, you’ll pay the regular adult $3.30 fare, and if you need to make a transfer, just tap the same card you used to pay your initial fare and you’ll be able to ride as much as you need for free for two hours. And kids age 0-12 ride free on all Toronto transit systems!
The system accepts Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Interac Debit, Visa Debit, Debit Mastercard, and Apple Pay and Google Pay on your phone.
If a transit inspector asks you for proof of payment during your ride, you only need to show them the same card or phone that you used to tap onto the system.
If you think you’ll be riding on transit more than four times over the course of more than eight hours in a single day, you can also purchase a day pass, but given the convenience of the tap payment system most people find this to be more of a hassle than it’s worth.
Have any additional questions about riding transit in Toronto? Feel free to contact us and we’ll be glad to assist you!