Bus basics: Are you ready to get onboard?

Here are some tips for first-time travelers.Here are some tips for first-time travelers.

Are you ready to take the bus downtown to work, to the U of M, to the Mall of America or other destinations in Dakota and Scott counties and the Twin Cities? Here are some easy-to-follow basics for the first-time MTVA traveler:

Frequently Asked Questions 

I need to go somewhere by bus. How do I plan my trip?

You can do this several ways. Use the online trip planner at mvta.com by typing in your starting and ending locations, as well as the time and date of the trip. You will be provided with a variety of trip options. You can also use the pocket schedules which can be found on our website or at our transit stations. Lastly, our customer service representatives are here to help you plan your trip as well. You can contact Customer Service at 952-882-7500.

How do I read a pocket schedule?

First, make sure you have selected the correct schedule. Second, look for either AM or PM travel times and find the correct stop at the top of the schedule. Continue along the trip to find your ending destination and time.

Where can I pick up a pocket schedule?

Individual pocket schedules are available on our website, buses and all transit stations. Or Call Customer Service at 952-882-7500 and they can be mailed to you. At www.mvta.com, you can go to our route schedule page --  www.mvta.com/routes/ -- click on a route and download the route schedule.

How do I catch my bus?

Be sure to arrive at the bus stop 5-7 minutes early. Wait for your bus at the designated bus stop (for routes 444, 445, 464, 480 only) or stand in a safe location and flag the bus once it arrives. Read the overheard sign to make sure you are boarding the correct bus.

How much does it cost to ride MVTA?

Fare Category

Non-rush Hour

Rush Hour


$1.75 local bus, $2.25 express bus

$2.25 local, $3.00 express

Seniors (65 )

$0.75 local, $0.75 express

$2.25 local, $3.00 express

Persons with disabilities

$0.75 local and express

$0.75 local and express

Youth (6-12)

$0.75 local and express

$2.25 local, $3.00 express

Children (5 and under)



Disabled Veterans



How do I put more money on my Go-To card?

You can use the ticket vending machines located at our transit stations.

How do I get off the bus?

About one block before your destination, pull the cord above the windows or politely alert the driver.

Are all buses equipped with bike racks?

Yes, MVTA buses can carry two bikes on the rack at the front of the bus. We also have bike lockers located at Burnsville, Eagan and Apple Valley Transit Stations as well as at the Palomino Hills and Blackhawk Park & Ride lots. Lockers can be rented via mail or at the Burnsville Transit Station for $5 per month with a two-month minimum, plus a $25 refundable deposit. Download Bike Rental Form.

Can I eat or drink on the bus?

You may have a beverage on board as long as it’s covered. There is no eating on the bus.

I lost a personal belonging on a bus, what do I do?

Please call the MVTA at (952) 882-7500 to find or report your missing item.

What are MVTA’s hours of operation?

Our customer service offices are open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

For more information on how to ride the bus, call Customer Service at 952-882-7500 and check out our How to Ride video!

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