Transportation Services administers an employee bus pass program, available at a greatly subsidized cost, to encourage employees to take transit to and from work. The employee bus pass allows for unlimited rides on Madison Metro Transit buses for eligible employees. Thousands of UW employees receive a bus pass every year!
Bus passes are valid from September 1 through August 31 of the following year. Bus passes are available for sale starting August 1.
This page contains information on bus pass eligibility, how to obtain a bus pass, how to use a bus pass, and what to do if your bus pass is lost or stolen.
All employee bus pass rules and restrictions can be found in the bus pass policy.
Most UW-Madison faculty and staff and UW Health employees are eligible for a bus pass. Eligible employees must be located on the UW-Madison campus and have an active appointment.
Employees cannot obtain their bus pass before their first day of employment/appointment.
If you have questions about your eligibility, please call (608) 263-6667.
- UW-Madison faculty and staff (including LTEs)
- UW Health Hospitals and Clinics employees
- UW Medical Foundation employees
- UW-Madison emeriti
- UW Colleges employees and emeriti
- UW System employees and emeriti
- UW Extension employees and emeriti
Note: affiliate prices may vary
- UW Foundation
- Wisconsin Historical Society
- WI Crop Improvement Association
- Morgridge Institute for Research (MIR)
- UW student employees (students are eligible for bus passes through ASM)
- Retired persons without emeriti status
Obtain your bus pass
Bus passes are valid from September 1 through August 31 of the following year. Bus passes are available for sale starting August 1. You can purchase a bus pass any time throughout the year for a prorated price.
New employees cannot purchase a bus pass until their first day of work.
You can obtain an employee bus pass two ways:
1. Order online. We will mail your bus pass to you. Delivery may take up to two weeks. Online bus pass ordering instructions (PDF)
Order bus pass online
2. Purchase your bus pass at a Transportation Services office location. Be sure to bring a photo ID.
Payment and cost
- Bus passes cost $48 for a full year (Sept. 1 through following Aug. 31). Passes are prorated after September 1 of their effective year. Affiliate prices may vary; check with your employer.
- Payment options include payroll deduction, credit/debit card, and check or cash (in-person purchases only).
- UW Health Hospitals and Clinics employees, as well as UW Medical Foundation employees, will have the full cost of their bus pass paid for by UW Health.
- Please note: UW School of Medicine and Public Health employees are typically considered faculty/staff for purposes of bus passes, therefore UW Health does not cover the pass cost.
Bus pass usage
To use the UW employee bus pass, you must have both the bus pass and your UW Wiscard, UW affiliate ID or UW Hospital ID with you when you board the bus. Swipe your bus pass upon boarding the bus. The bus driver may request to see your UW ID.
Want a walk-through guide on how to use the bus? Try the Madison Metro “how to ride” page for details.
Bus passes are non-transferable: only the person assigned the bus pass may use it. Your pass is subject to confiscation if misused. Bus pass use and replacement activity is monitored for fraud. Bus pass privileges will be revoked for customers found in violation of the bus pass policy.
Leaving your position? Bus passes must be returned to UW Transportation Services if your employment appointment with the UW (or authorized affiliate) is ended. Refunds or payroll deduction cancellations will not be processed until the permit and the completed cancellation form (PDF) is returned to one of the Transportation Services offices. Payroll deductions are not eligible for refund. Employees must request (prorated) refunds, if eligible, within 14 calendar days of the end of their appointment.
Bus passes not returned will be cancelled and become invalid.
Replacement bus passes
If a pass is lost or stolen, customers may purchase a replacement bus pass for $25 by visiting one of our customer service locations. Cash, check and credit card are accepted. Be sure to bring a photo ID. Replacement bus passes are not available for purchase online.
If your bus pass is stolen, please bring a copy of the police report for our records. Replaced bus passes are no longer valid and are deactivated.
Defective bus passes or bus passes that no longer function properly due to normal wear and tear will be replaced free of charge.