AC Transit to offer free fares on New Year’s Eve for 2nd year in a row

In response to the upcoming New Year’s Eve festivities, AC Transit will be offering free fares from 8 p.m. on Saturday to 5 a.m. on Sunday.

The free fares include all AC Transit bus lines throughout the East Bay, according to AC Transit spokesperson Robert Lyles. Lyles said during the free fare hours, fare boxes and clipper card readers will be covered and will not accept payment.

This is the second year AC Transit has offered this service. According to Lyles, last year about 10,700 people used AC Transit services to travel on New Year’s Eve. In the press release announcing the continuation of this service, AC Transit called itself “your designated driver to and from your celebrations without cost.”

“AC Transit wants to provide a safe alternative to intoxicated driving,” Lyles said in an email. “Those numbers were encouraging to our Board of Directors, who agreed to offer free fares for the second year.”

According to Berkeley Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Andrew Frankel, the number of alcohol-related incidences typically increases around New Year’s Eve. Frankel said BPD released a Nixle alert Thursday detailing alternative transportation options to driving on New Year’s, including AC Transit, CalTrain and BART.

“(The services) absolutely help, which is why we shared all of those agencies as well as their hours,” Frankel said. “I think it’s safe to say that these programs help reduce the number of impaired motorists on the roads.”

Daniel Seel, the general manager at Tupper & Reed, said…

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