You will soon discover that riding the bus is simple. You can get started with our 5 easy steps below. Or, first-time riders with a mobile phone can skip the details and use our Quick Start Guide. Welcome aboard.
How to Ride
There are many ways to plan a bus trip. Try a few different methods to see which one you prefer.
- Google Maps – Go to google.com/maps and enter where you want to go. Then click “directions” by transit.
- VIA goMobile – Download the free VIA goMobile app for Apple and Android devices to plan trips and purchase tickets. Select Trip Tools in the app for a link to plan trips using Google Maps.
- VIAInfo.Net – In addition to Google Maps for trip planning, VIA provides individual bus schedules and other tools for riders to use on the Trip Planning page.
- Other Mobile Apps – VIA partners with several third-party trip planning apps to make it more convenient for passengers. Visit the Mobile Apps page for a list of available apps.
- VIA Innovation Lab – VIA’s Department of Technology and Innovation offers a variety of specialty transit and trip planning tools developed by our staff and participants in our GoCodeSA Codeathon competition. Check out the latest tools on the VIA Innovation Lab
VIA Customer Service representatives are available to help customers plan a trip from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Friday; 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at (210) 362-2020. Schedule is subject to change during holidays.
VIA offers several options for paying your fare.
- VIA goMobile – We recommend the using the free VIA goMobile app on your smartphone as your best option to purchase your ticket. Available for Apple and Android devices, check out our new payment options and updates that make VIA goMobile more convenient and easy. You can purchase everything from a 2.5 Hour Pass to a 31-Day Pass. If you qualify for Reduced Fares, you can purchase those on goMobile as well. For convenience, you can buy tickets anytime and activate them when you are ready to ride. More about goMobile.
- VIA goCard – A new, convenient alternative to a cash free payment is coming soon!
- On the bus – Riders can purchase single-ride fares or a single Day Pass on the bus with cash. Day Passes must be requested before inserting cash into the farebox. Change will be issued if amount due exceeds $1 and will be in the form of an e-fare change card if requested.
- VIA Online Store – Online orders of paper tickets are processed within three days and then mailed to customers. Visit the online store.
- Retail Outlets, including VIA Customer Service Centers and most H-E-B stores.
- Ticket Vending Machines – Available at Crossroads Park & Ride and Medical Center Transit Center.
Before buying your ticket, review the complete list of tickets, passes and discounts on the Fares page.
Follow the instructions on your trip planner to get to your bus stop. Match the 5-digit stop ID at the stop with what’s on your instructions. You can also verify that the bus route number you plan to ride is listed on the sign.
As a bus approaches your stop, look for the 1- to 3-digit route number on the digital sign at the top and side of the bus and match it up with the route number on your instructions. Be sure the bus operator sees you, or wave your hand as the bus approaches so they know you want to board.
Activate your mobile ticket or have your paper ticket ready to show the operator.
Real-time arrivals – Several stops and transit centers have digital signs that provide next bus arrival times based on the real-time location. You can also text the 5-digit Bus Stop Number on the bus stop sign to 52020 for real-time information. More about Real-time arrivals.
Sit back and relax until it’s time to get off the bus.
When your stop is next, alert the operator by pulling the yellow cord or pushing the yellow strip near the window. Operators may pass the stop if they are not alerted.