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Reduced Fares

In order to qualify for reduced fare on our fixed-route system, one must be age 65 or older, or have a current qualifying disability. All applicants not in The Rapid database must complete and submit a reduced fare application or visit Rapid Central Station.

Reduced Fare Verification

You will need to have your reduced fare application verified to qualify. Reduced fare applications can be verified by any one of the following professionals: medical or clinic staff member, licensed social worker, vocational specialist (for example, Michigan Rehabilitation Services, Goodwill, Hope Network), school staff member, social worker, teacher or paraprofessional, counselor, therapist, veterans’ organization, or community support agency such as Pine Rest, Thresholds, Touchstone Innovare, Arbor Circle, or MOKA Disability Advocates of Kent County. Your application can also be verified using your Social Security Insurance benefit determination paperwork.

Reduced Fare Eligibility

A determination letter will be mailed to you within five to seven business days (weekdays).

Use of reduced fare cards requires proof of disability or age 65+. The valid ID for persons with disabilities is a Rapid-issued photo ID card. The Rapid honors half fare for Medicare card holders. Seniors may use: Medicare card, driver's license, or other proof of age 65+. The half fare applies to single ride cash fares only.

To get a Rapid photo ID, take your determination letter and a valid photo ID to Rapid Central Station on a weekday between 10:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. to receive your Rapid reduced fare photo ID.

Reduced fare eligibility is at the discretion of Rapid certifying staff. Exclusions include those whose sole disabilities are a result of drug and/or alcohol impairment, obesity, or pregnancy. If you have questions regarding this policy, please contact Sarah Green by phone at 616-456-7514.

You may receive same day cards if you: 

  • Prove you are 65 years or older with a valid photo ID.
  • Have a Medicare card and a picture ID to verify your identity. Applicants must complete the top portion of an application with current address in order to authorize the release of information to The Rapid. 
  • Are currently in our database as permanently eligible and have a current picture ID with you.

Staff will do their best to accommodate same day service, but in all cases The Rapid is allowed up to seven business days to provide the Reduced Fare ID card. The Rapid is under no obligation to provide a Reduced Fare ID card on the same day it is requested.

Replacement fees will be charged on a graduated level ranging from $5.00 up to $20.00. After four replacements The Rapid reserves the right to deny any further replacement cards.

Federal Half-Fare Requirements

"Elderly" by Federal Transit Administration (FTA) regulations is to "at a minimum, include all persons 65 years of age or over." Grantees are permitted to use a definition that extends this fare to younger (i.e., age 62 and over) persons. Persons with disabilities are defined by the FTA as persons "who by reason of illness, injury, age, congenital malfunction, or other incapacity or temporary or permanent disability (including any individual who is a wheelchair user or has semi-ambulatory capabilities), cannot use effectively, without special facilities, planning, or design, mass transportation service or mass transportation facility." Medicare is available for people age 65 or older, younger people with disabilities, and people with end-stage renal disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or transplant).

** Use of reduced fare cards requires proof of disability or age 65+. Valid ID for persons with disabilities include a Rapid-issued photo ID card or Medicare card. The Rapid honors half fare for Medicare card holders. Seniors may use: Medicare card, driver's license, or other proof of age 65+. The half fare applies to single ride cash fares only.