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Tap into an easier commute.

PRESTO Explained

The PRESTO card is a durable plastic smart card, and a convenient new way to pay for transit fares in Ontario.

You simply tap your PRESTO card on a card reader onboard the bus, or, starting in Fall 2012, at the O-Train platform.

If you're using e-Purse, PRESTO deducts the fare and records a transfer product on your card. As long as your journey is within the transfer window, no additional fare is deducted.

If you have a monthly pass on your card, PRESTO confirms that the pass is valid for the route and current month.

Photo ID will no longer be required with PRESTO. Since no photo ID is required with PRESTO, PRESTO cards are fully transferable. That means a family member, co-worker, neighbor or friend may use your card when you don't need it, as long as you are both within the same fare category.

Please note: Cards purchased in Ottawa cannot be used in Toronto and the GTHA at this time.

Purchase a PRESTO Card


One Card

Travel with a single card anywhere that PRESTO is accepted, without the need to carry paper tickets, passes, or cash.

Please note: Cards purchased in Ottawa cannot be used in Toronto and the GTHA at this time.

Where PRESTO is Accepted


Load and Reload Value

You can reload e-Purse and monthly passes through the PRESTO website or call centre, or at an OC Transpo Sales & Information Centre.

Note: Your PRESTO card stores your balance on the chip inside the card. It does not update automatically when you load value online. To update the balance on your card, you have to connect to the PRESTO network by tapping your card on a PRESTO device. However, it may take up to 24 hours for every device in the network to sync. We recommend that you always load your card online at least 24 hours before you require the balance.

The minimum load amount is $10; the maximum is $1,000.


Concessions

With proof of eligibility, you can have your PRESTO card set with a concession at OC Transpo Sales & Information Centre.

Once your concession is set you can load a concession pass through the PRESTO website or call centre, or in person at any OC Transpo Sales & Information Centre.

If the concession is for a child, child fare is deducted from e-Purse.


Register your PRESTO Card

We strongly encourage you to protect your card's balance by registering it online or by mail-in form. If your card is lost, stolen or damaged, PRESTO can transfer your balance to a new card.

Registration also has other benefits. You can go into overdraft for a single trip if you run low on e-Purse or forget to renew your pass. You can set up a payment agreement to automatically reload your card. And, you can obtain a Transit Usage Report for Federal Public Transit Tax Credit.

To Register your Card:

  1. Complete the online registration form.
  2. Wait 24 hours for the PRESTO network to update.
  3. Tap your card to a PRESTO device within 30 days to update your card's registration.


Autoload and Autorenew

Autoload: If your card is registered, you can set up a payment agreement to automatically reload your e-Purse when it reaches a certain dollar amount, chosen by you.

Autorenew: If your card is registered, you can set up a payment agreement to automatically renew your pass product each month. Six days prior to the end of each month, PRESTO debits your account for the value of your pass and when you tap your card as part of a regular trip writes the new pass to your card.

To set up Autoload/Autorenew:

  1. Register your PRESTO card
  2. Sign in to your online account and set up an Autoload or Autorenew contract (credit/debit card required)
  3. Wait 24 hours for the PRESTO network to update
  4. Tap your card to a PRESTO device within 30 days to update your card's Autoload/Autorenew settings

Please note: Upon initial setup, new Autorenew contracts trigger an immediate payment for the first month and then follow the 6 day rule thereafter.


Requested Reload

Use Requested Reload to store your payment information in your PRESTO account so you don't have to re-enter it every time you load funds. Requested Reload also allows you to load your card over the phone.

Set up Requested Reload online using your credit card or, if you want to use preauthorized debit from your bank account, set up Requested Reload by mail - find the paper form at the bottom of the page.

To set up Requested Reload:

  1. Register your PRESTO card
  2. Sign in to your online account and set up a Requested Reload contract OR download and complete the PDF form at the bottom of this page and mail it to the address listed on the form
  3. Allow 24 hours for processing
  4. Load funds to your PRESTO card online or by phone whenever you need


Passes

A pass allows you to travel for a set period of time. Passes can be purchased and loaded onto your PRESTO card through the PRESTO Website or call centre, or at an OC Transpo Sales & Information Centre.


PRESTO Card Language Settings

Your PRESTO card can be set to either English or French. This determines the display language on the PRESTO devices when you tap. You can visit a Customer Service Outlet to change your card's language setting.

Your card's language setting does not affect the website display language. To view the PRESTO website in French, click Français in the top right corner of the screen.


Federal Tax Credit for Public Transit

Registered card holders are eligible for the federal income tax credit for public transit.For additional information: visit the Canada Revenue Agency website.

Transit Usage Reports will be available for registered PRESTO card holders starting February 18, 2013. If you register your card before February 8, 2013, you will be eligible to receive a Transit Usage Report for 2012. Cards registered after this date will not be eligible.


Paper Forms

A number of our online services may be accessed by paper form:


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