Do I need a minimum balance on my card to ride Muni?

If you use cash value on your card Muni requires the following minimum balance to ride:

  • Adult cards: $1.50
  • Senior/youth/disabled cards: $0.75

If you have Muni passes loaded on your Clipper card, no minimum cash value balance is required.

Do I need to tag my card even if I have a monthly pass?

Regardless of whether you use cash value or a monthly pass, you must tag your card to a Muni vehicle or station entry gate every time you board. Your tag is your proof of payment.

Should I ask for a transfer when I board a Muni vehicle? How can I prove that I paid?

Clipper will automatically calculate the 90-minute transfer period on Muni, so you are not required to carry a paper transfer. You must tag your card each time you transfer and enter a vehicle so that the card reader can confirm the transfer period is still in effect. The card reader will beep and show a green light to indicate that your transfer is valid. Transit fare inspectors have hand held card readers and conduct random checks of Clipper customers to ensure that they have tagged their cards properly. The hand held card reader used by fare payment officers only confirms that you have proper payment; it does not affect your card balance.

I use the elevator or handicap/emergency exits to enter the station platform. Where do I tag my card?

All Muni stations have Clipper card readers located on poles outside of the station booths or next to the elevator in the Embarcadero, Montgomery or Powell BART/Muni stations. Tag your card on the Clipper card reader on the pole as proof-of-payment when entering the Muni or BART platform.

I see card readers on the back doors. Do I still have to board through the front?

SFMTA allows customers to board through the front and rear doors.

Can I use my card to pay the fare of someone traveling with me?

Clipper cards are for individual use only. Each customer five years of age or older must have his/her own card. Clipper cards also have a feature that stops you from tagging more than once on the same bus or Muni Metro fare gate within a 10-minute time frame. This feature was built in to protect you from accidentally tagging and being charged twice.

Will I still receive the transfer discount with my Clipper card when transferring between Muni and BART or Golden Gate Ferry?

When transferring from BART to Muni within an hour of using your Clipper card, you will qualify for two $0.25 discounts (on a cash fare - does not apply to customers using a Muni Monthly Pass) for Muni buses, light rail vehicles and historic street cars within a 24-hour period following your initial transfer to Muni.

Golden Gate Transit and Ferry customers paying with cash on their Clipper cards will receive a $0.50 discount off the Muni adult cash fare when transferring to a Muni bus, light rail vehicle or streetcar (discount does not apply to customers who have a Muni Monthly Pass). In addition, customers who pay their Muni fare with cash on their Clipper cards and transfer to Golden Gate Transit and Ferry will receive a $0.50 discount for adults and $0.25 discount for senior, disabled or youth customers (the discount on the Golden Gate Transit and Ferry fares does not apply to those paying with Monthly Pass on Muni).

Remember, you must tag your card to the card reader in order for the system to calculate your transfer fare discount.

How do I use Clipper on the cable cars?

Simply hand your Clipper card to the conductor. The conductor will have a hand-held card reader that will check your card for a valid monthly pass. If your card does not have a valid pass, the hand-held card reader will deduct the appropriate fare from your card's cash balance.