U Pass BC program updates
July 28, 2020
UBC worked closely with its partners at the AMS, TransLink, other student associations, and post-secondary institutions to temporarily suspend the U-Pass BC program from May 1 as course-delivery moved online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The suspension is currently agreed to be in place up until the end of August 2020. However, as the changes to on-line course delivery that also impact the delivery of the U-Pass BC are expected to continue into the fall term, discussions with partners are ongoing to determine if and when the U-Pass BC program can resume.
In the meantime, you may have noticed that your fee statement may include the U-Pass BC fee for fall course registration. Please note, this fee is still subject to change, as no decision has been made yet about the operations of the program. If the U-Pass BC remains suspended for the fall term, we will provide those students who have paid the U-Pass BC fee an account-credit or a refund.
NOTE: U-Pass fee has increased from $41.00/month ($164/term) to $42.50/month ($170/term) effective May 1 2020.
- The U-Pass BC program is offered to students under agreements in place between TransLink, participating colleges/universities and their associated student societies. Students pay for this pass through mandatory student fees.
May 20, 2020
- In agreement with TransLink and student associations, the post-secondary institutions will be issuing refunds of the mandatory U-Pass BC fees for April 2020 to students who did not need to use their U-Pass BC. For simplicity, refunds will be issued to those students who did not use their pass for more than $41 in stored value travel.
- Students who are eligible for refunds of April 2020 U-Pass will have their fee recalculated from $164 to $123 in 2019 Winter Term 2 and be notified by e-mail. Translink has deemed that students are eligible if the April U-Pass was not loaded or if the total April usage was less than $41. Any resulting U-Pass credit can be left on the student’s account for future fees or students may request a refund. Students who have a tuition credit and would like to request a refund can contact Enrolment Services at 604.822.9836 or 1.877.272.1422, or fill in the form at askme.ubc.ca.
What is the U-Pass Program?
The U-Pass BC program provides students with universal, accessible and affordable access to public transit across the Metro Vancouver Region.
The U-Pass BC program costs $170 per academic term or $42.50 per month (subject to change) and is mandatory for all members of UBC's Alma Mater Society (AMS), excluding students who are enrolled in strictly distance education courses. The cost is included as part of your AMS student fees. Students voted in a referendum to keep the U-Pass program and in 2019, 95% of students elected to participate in the U-Pass program.
Getting a Compass Card
Compass Cards can be purchased for $6 from TransLink’s FareDealers (including the Access Desk and cashiers at the UBC Bookstore). For a list of TransLink’s retailers, please refer to their website.
If you’re already using an adult-class Compass Card as a retail customer, you can load the U-Pass onto your card.
Requesting Your Monthly U-Pass Benefit
For each month that you are eligible for a U-Pass you will need to make a request online to link your U-Pass and Compass Card. You can make the request anytime on or after the 16th of each month to ensure you can ride transit the following month. Set yourself a reminder - on your phone, in your diary. You can complete the request using a smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer.
Steps to request your monthly pass:
- Visit upassbc.translink.ca
- Select UBC as your Post-Secondary Institution
- Enter your CWL login and password when redirected to UBC
- Link your Compass Card if prompted, request your U-Pass BC benefit
- Allow up to 24 hours for activation
It can take up to 24 hours for your U-Pass BC to load on to your Compass Card. Be sure to log in and request your benefit well in advance of the start to each month. Don’t get stuck without a transit pass.
Using Your Compass Card
Riding transit with your Compass Card is easy: tap in when entering a bus or tap in and tap out when you are entering and leaving a Skytrain station through a fare gate. Card readers are located at all SkyTrain, Canada Line, and SeaBus fare gates, near bus doors, and at the entry and exit points to West Coast Express stations.
Your Compass Card must be tapped in to be considered a valid proof of payment.
- Your Compass-U-Pass BC is not transferable. You must also carry a valid student ID (your UBC student ID card must be valid for the full term) with you at all times when riding transit.
- The U-Pass BC program protects your privacy, more information is available online.
- TransLink has created a videos and a guide on how to use your Compass Card. Visit the Compass Card website for more information.
- You will not be eligible for a U-Pass BC benefit if your UBC student card is expired (check the expiry date on the back of your card). Expired cards can be replaced at ubccard.ubc.ca.
Campus and Community Planning is not able to assist students with any technical difficulties related to U-Pass/Compass Card.
Please contact an Enrolment Service Advisor at 604-822-9836
(business hours are 9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday, except Tuesday 10 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.)
Or email an Enrolment Service Advisor through the Ask Me form: