More Than a Smart Card
Tap your card to the reader every time you board or transfer, and you're on your way. The green checkmark you see when you tap to board and transfer means you're good to go (you won’t necessarily pay every time you tap).
Why Using The Wave is a Smart Choice
The Wave will give you the best deal on your fare based on how much you ride.
Add funds to your account anywhere, anytime. Or choose auto-load to add funds when your balance is low.
Set up a payment method, manage multiple cards, see your history and more.
Get The Wave
You will be able to purchase your Wave card for a one-time fee of $3 for the card itself, which will last up to 10 years. Then add funds to your card (there is a $5 minimum). Each rider (42” or taller) will need their own.
If you're a frequent rider, auto-load is the way to go — just set it to add funds when your balance is low, and ride The Rapid without worry.
You can purchase The Wave card just about anywhere with:
- The Wave website
- In-person at Rapid Central Station
- Retail locations including Walgreens, Speedway, Marathon, and Mobil.
Lost your card? You can purchase a replacement Wave card for $3.
Register Your Card
Get access to benefits like balance protection in case you lose your card, and auto-load, which means you’ll never be stuck without fare.
Simply touch your Wave card to the reader every time you board or transfer, and you’re on your way. There are Wave readers at every Silver Line station (tap before you board) and onboard every bus (tap as you board).
When you tap, the reader will show a green checkmark and you'll hear a sound confirming that you paid your fare. It'll also show you how much time you have left on your card, and alert you if your balance is running low.
With The Wave card, your transfer timeframe is 105 minutes and begins with your first tap. This means that you have 105 minutes to ride anywhere in the system, even on the same route!
Watch a video about how to tap your Wave card.
By registering your card you can view your account balance, manage one or multiple cards, see recent trips and transactions, or set your card to auto-load, so you’ll never be stuck without fare. Registration can be done online.
Add money to your account anywhere, anytime using the website or by visiting the Information Center at Rapid Central Station.
Auto-load and Ride Without Worry
If you’re a frequent rider, auto-load can be set to reload funds to your account when your balance is low. You can set your amounts and never worry about fares again.
Watch a video on how to load your Wave card.
Fast and Easy
Say goodbye to paper tickets. Simply touch your Wave card to the reader every time you board or transfer, and you're on your way! There are readers on every bus and at every Silver Line station.
When you ride The Rapid using your Wave card you can get the savings of daily, weekly, and monthly passes, but without the commitment or the upfront cost. You pay your way one trip at a time, and you’ll never pay for a trip you don’t take. The Wave will give you the best deal on your fare based on how much you ride. It’s a 'pay-as-you-go' pass: Earn a day pass after riding twice in one day, or a monthly pass after riding twice a day for 20 days.
Add funds to your account, anytime using The Wave website, Information Center at Rapid Central Station, or at retail locations. Or choose auto-load to add funds when your balance is low.
It's simple. Once you add a payment method to your account, just choose the balance amount you want auto-load to kick in at and then select the amount you want to add to your Wave card.
You can quickly register your card and set up a funding source using our mobile-friendly website. You can manage multiple cards, see a history of your recent trips and transactions, and deactivate/reactivate a lost or stolen card. And don't forget to set up auto-load, so you’re never stuck without fare.
The Wave makes riding The Rapid easier, faster and more convenient — benefiting riders and operators.
- Fast and easy fare payment
- No paper tickets or exact change required
- Save money by always getting the best fare
- Added benefits for frequent riders
- Load anywhere
- Manage your account
Don't worry. We still take cash.
You’ll be able to purchase The Wave card using cash within our retail network of supermarkets, convenience stores and more. If you don’t have a card, you’ll still be able to use cash on buses — just like today — but you’ll miss out on Wave benefits like automatic reloading and paying your way toward a 31-Day Pass.
This means riders without a bank account can use The Wave, too.
You’ll need to tap your card or phone to the reader every time you board or transfer. Don’t worry, tapping doesn’t necessarily mean paying — The Wave card won’t charge you if you have a valid fare or you’re within your transfer timeframe.
You can see how much money/time is remaining on your card by visiting The Wave website or at Rapid Central Station. The green checkmark you see when you tap to board and transfer means you're good to go (you won’t necessarily pay every time you tap).
There is no service charge for using The Wave. However, there is a $5 minimum when loading value when using a credit/debit card. There's also a $3 fee for the card itself, which will last up to 10 years. Replacement cards are $3.
Registering for The Wave will give you access to benefits like balance protection, in case you lose your card. Simply report your card as lost or stolen and purchase a replacement card for $3. Add the card to your account to access your remaining balance.
Whether you're the head of your family or just the leader of your group, it's easy to manage Wave cards for several riders. Just make sure everyone has their own card registered to the Wave account. Then add value and get on board!
Transit value isn’t stored on Wave cards and can’t be read by unauthorized personnel — when you tap your card to the reader, a transaction is instantly sent to the central system and deducted from your account balance. Your bank and personal information is protected and more secure compared to using a traditional magnetic stripe card.
In your account, you’ll also be able to see your card use history, including where you’ve tapped on. We’ll never sell this data.
Participating employers, agencies, and schools will be able to provide employees, clients, and students with Wave cards. So if you’re used to getting a pass this way, the only change will be remembering to tap on each time you board your bus.
No, riders can still pay with cash on buses. However, eventually, those paying cash fares will no longer have access to free transfers.
When you register your Wave card, you can set up auto-load, which puts money on your Wave card whenever your balance dips below the amount of your choosing.
Savvy riders know that daily, seven-day and monthly passes are the convenient and cost-effective way to ride The Rapid. But making the most of a monthly pass can take planning, and there’s an upfront cost.
With The Wave, everyone will get the benefits of passes, and there’s no need to pay in advance. You’ll pay your way to a pass, one trip at a time.
The minimum amount to load onto a Wave account is $5, except at the Information Center at Rapid Central Station.
No. Since Wave cards track ridership to give passengers the best deal for how much they ride, it isn’t possible for one person to share a card with a family member or friend.
Fare capping is a pay-as-you-go fare feature which allows you to make a number of trips and limits the amount you pay for all your travel. You will no longer need to decide in advance which ticket would be best for you. Capped fare allows you to be flexible with your travel throughout a day or week without needing to buy additional tickets or worrying that you have spent more than you need. Caps are applied automatically once you hit the cap amount.
Fare capping levels:
- Spend $3.50 in one day (two one-way trips) and receive unlimited rides for the rest of the day.
- Spend $16 and receive unlimited rides within 7 days.
- Spend $47 and receive unlimited rides within 31 days.