Public Transit “Free Rides July” returns to Stanislaus and Merced counties

The Stanislaus Regional Transit Authority (StanRTA), City of Turlock (Turlock Transit) and Transit Joint Powers Authority for Merced County (The Bus) announced today that all rides on all fixed-route, commuter, and ADA Paratransit buses will be free for passengers during July as part of a joint free-ride promotion. This includes local fixed-route services as well as ACE, BART, and Stockton Commuter bus services, The Micro Bus in Merced County, ADA Paratransit, and Medivan, but excludes Turlock Transit’s On-Demand Service. All public transit buses in Stanislaus and Merced Counties are accessible to individuals with disabilities as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Funding for the joint free-ride promotion is made possible through a grant from the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) under the Low Carbon Transit Operations Program (LCTOP), as well as federal transit funding.

“Through our Free Fares Project, we’re able to provide free, safe, and reliable transportation services for residents to travel to educational institutions, employment centers, medical offices, grocery stores, and shopping malls,” said Adam Barth, StanRTA CEO. “Free Rides July helps make it possible for riders to use public transportation without any financial hardship.” The Stanislaus County regional transit operators have also used the LCTOP grant to provide free-ride promotional opportunities such as Go Green Week in March, Earth Day in April, and Dump the Pump Day in June, with more free fare periods planned through June 2024.

“Our goal is to increase public transit use and improve air quality while at the same time reducing traffic congestion and harmful emissions,” said Wayne York, Transit Manager for Turlock Transit. “We look forward to providing free trips to regional areas of interest, including the annual County Fair.”

“We are excited to collaborate with our partners in Stanislaus County to integrate transit services in Merced County,” said Nav Bagri, Deputy Executive Director of the Merced County Association of Governments. “This practical approach enhances accessibility to communities we do not currently serve and contributes to the well-being of our neighborhoods by reducing both the number of cars on the road and their associated emissions.”

Residents are encouraged to make the most of this free-ride promotion by planning their trips in advance. Trip planning tools are available on the transit operators’ websites which can be found at:,, and, as well as through smartphone apps such as the Transit app, Google Maps or StanRTA’s custom Track the S app – all available for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play Stores. These tools make it easy to determine the closest bus stop, the correct route, and access real-time bus arrival information.