How do I locate the Clipper reader if I am visually impaired?

To assist passengers with visual impairments, Caltrain has introduced tone locators to the Clipper card readers. The readers will emit a beeping sound every 15 seconds, which can alert passengers with visual impairments to where they can tag their Clipper card. The locator beeps will have a lower decibel level and tone than the beeps that indicate whether a person has tagged on or off at the Clipper card reader. Listen to a sample of the tone.

How does Clipper calculate my fare?

When you tag on, Clipper deducts the maximum one-way fare from your card. When you tag off, Clipper calculates your actual fare based on the zones traveled and adjusts your balance accordingly, using any Monthly Pass as fare payment. If you do not tag off, you will be charged the maximum one-way fare from your starting point.

Why do I need to have $1.25 on my card if I'm paying with a Monthly Pass?

When you tag on, the card reader does not know your final destination, so it deducts the maximum one-way fare. To ensure that you have enough value to pay the maximum fare, you are required to have an additional $1.25 on your card. When you tag off, Clipper calculates your actual fare based on the zones traveled and adjusts your balance accordingly, using any Monthly Pass as fare payment.

Do I have to tag on and tag off every time I ride?

If you are using cash value, you need to tag on and tag off every time you ride. If you do not tag off, you will be charged the maximum one-way fare from your starting point. The only exception is if you are transferring to a connecting Caltrain train traveling in the same direction in that case, you do not need to tag off until you complete your one-way trip.

Monthly Pass holders should tag on and off based on the guidelines below.

  • If you bought your pass at a Clipper retailer (such as Walgreens or Anchor Drugs Pharmacy), self-serve machine (such as VTA or Muni ticket machines) or staffed location, you don't need to tag your card at a station. The pass is already loaded and can be checked by a conductor.
  • If you ordered your pass online or through your transit benefit program, you can tag on and off at a single station within 15 minutes before your first ride of the month to load your pass and receive a full refund of the maximum cash value fare.
  • If you have set up automatic reloading of your pass, you must tag on and off at different stations within the zone combination you purchased during your first trip of the month, but no later than the 15th of the month. If you forget to tag off within 4 hours of tagging on, your pass will not load to your card and you will be charged the maximum fare from your tag origin.
  • You also should tag on and tag off if you want to be eligible for discounted transfers to AC Transit, Dumbarton Express, and Muni.

What happens if I forget to tag off?

If you do not tag off within four hours, you will be charged the maximum one-way fare from your starting point. Clipper will deduct this amount from your cash balance, even if you have a Monthly Pass on your card. If this causes your cash balance to go below $1.25, you will need to add cash value to your card before you can ride again.

What if I want to ride beyond the zones on my Monthly Pass?

If you want to travel outside the zones of your Monthly Pass, you must purchase a Zone Upgrade ticket from the Caltrain ticket machine or through Caltrain Mobile. The upgrade and your Clipper card are your proof of payment. Do not tag on and off outside the zones covered by your Monthly Pass, or Clipper will deduct the entire cost of your one-way trip from your cash balance.

Can I add value to my Clipper card at a Caltrain ticket machine?

Caltrain ticket machines cannot load value to Clipper cards, but you can add value using credit and debit cards at one of the Clipper Add Value machines at the San Francisco, Palo Alto and San Jose Diridon stations. The easiest way to add value is to set up Autoload to add value automatically when your pass expires or your balance gets low. Visit Ways to add value for other add-value options.

How does the conductor know I've paid my fare?

Caltrain conductors carry handheld card readers that can confirm that you have valid fare. Please show your Clipper card to the conductor when asked for proof of payment.

What happens if I tag on, but my travel plans change?

If you tag your card twice at the same station within 15 minutes, the second tag will cancel your ride. The card reader will display a message that your initial tag was refunded. If you want to ride the train, you will need to tag on again. If your second tag was done after 15 minutes, you will be charged the maximum one-way fare.

How do I obtain a monthly parking permit?

Customers who load a Monthly Pass on their Clipper card can purchase a monthly parking permit from any Caltrain ticket machine two days after purchasing their pass. For more information on obtaining and using a monthly parking permit, visit Caltrain.

 

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Fax: 925.686.8221

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Sat – Sun: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

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