Beat traffic with your transportation benefits
Does your daily commute to work include traffic jams and road rage? Skip the stress and save yourself some money with your employee transportation benefits.
As a City employee, you get deep discounts on bus and light rail rides. You can also save on carpooling.
More Americans use public transportation now than in the last 50 years, according to recent news reports. Have you ever thought about leaving your car at home? The Metropass program makes it easy.
The Metropass program gives you unlimited Metro Transit bus and light rail rides for $60 a month before taxes. Once you enroll, the Metropass fee is automatically deducted from your pre-tax pay each month and you’ll receive an ID card that you simply place in front of a scanner on the bus or at the light rail transit stop for your ride.
Please note, the Metropass covers the cost of fares under $3. That pays for the full cost of all fares except for rides on the Northstar Line from downtown Minneapolis to Big Lake, Elk River or Ramsey. If you travel to and from these cities to downtown Minneapolis, you will pay an extra 50 cents to $3 a ride. You may add up to $200 in value to your Metropass ID card to pay these long distance surcharges. You can add value online, at any Metro Transit store or at a rail station ticket machine.
To sign up for the Metropass program, fill out an enrollment form and then visit the Commuter Connection located in Suite 230 at 220 S. Sixth St. Staff at the Commuter Connection will take your your photo for your new Metropass ID card and provide you with a photo receipt to attach to your completed enrollment form.
Bike to work
Minneapolis consistently ranks as one of the best biking cities in the country. Have you ever thought about riding your bike to work?
Your employee transportation benefits allow you to pay for a bicycle storage locker with pre-tax dollars if you bike to work. You may set aside up to $245 per month for qualified bicycle parking expenses.
Remember, you also get 50 points toward your 2014 health and wellness program when you bike to work 50 times by Aug. 31. Bike trips are tracked using ZAP technology. When you earn 300 points for your 2014 health and wellness program and report your points on mymedica.com by Aug. 31, 2014, you will receive a discount on your monthly health insurance coverage next year. Savings averaged $400 a year for a single person and $1,200 a year for a family this year.
Take the carpool lane
Bypass traffic in the carpool lanes in a commuter van pool. Your transportation benefits allow you to set aside up to $245 a month to pay for commuter van pool expenses. To qualify, a commuter van pool vehicle must seat at least six passengers in addition to the driver and the vehicle must have at least three passengers in addition to the driver. In addition, at least 80 percent of the vehicle’s mileage must be used for transporting passengers between work and home.
Published Mar 18, 2014