U-Pass FAQ

1. How much does the U-Pass cost and when can I use it?

RRU and RRUSA have worked with BC Transit to ensure fair service delivery and a cost-effective price. Below is the cost breakdown and U-Pass schedule for the 2012/ 2013 year. 

ProgramDates on campusU-Pass termCost of U-Pass
BAPCSeptember 4 - August 4September 1 - August 31$255.00/ 12 months
BCOMOctober 1 - August 30October 1 - August 31$233.75/ 11 months
BScESSeptember 17 - August 30September 1 - August 31$255.00/ 12 months
BAIHMSeptember 17 - May 24September 1 - May 31$191.25/ 9 months

Students enrolled through the International Study Centre (ISC) receive a U-Pass based on their intake:

  • September intake : U-Pass valid from September 1 – August 31, $255.00
  • January Intake: U-Pass valid from January 1 – August 31, $170.00
  • May intake: U-Pass valid from May 1 – August 31, $85.00

2. Why do some RRU students get a U-Pass and not others?

The U-Pass agreement is between RRU, RRUSA, and BC Transit. RRUSA represents undergraduate students and received a mandate through referendum from its on-campus constituents to pursue a U-Pass for Royal Roads University. Because of the mandatory nature of the program, the U-Pass is currently only available to on-campus, undergraduate students.

RRU, RRUSA, and BC Transit are exploring the possibility of expanding the U-Pass program in the future to allow on-campus graduate students and distance student who reside in the Greater Victoria Area to opt-in to the U-Pass program.

3. Who else is using it?

The U-Pass program began in Victoria in 1999 at the University of Victoria and Camosun College, resulting in a 100% increase in transit ridership among students. Since then U-Pass is offered at UBC, SFU, and UFV (Vancouver area), TRU (Kamloops), College of the Rockies (Cranbrook), UBC-Okanagan (Kelowna), and UNBC (Prince George). There are more than 100 similar programs at universities and colleges across North America.

4. Is it a good deal?

You decide.
The U-Pass gives RRU students unlimited access to Victoria Regional Transit, including HandyDART, any time during their program for only $20.63 per month. Single use cash fare is $2.50 and a monthly university student pass is regularly $77.00. Even if you only make four round-trip busrides a month, the U-Pass has paid for itself.

5. What busses stop by RRU?

Buses run 365 days per year in Victoria, Saanich, Sidney, Colwood, Langford, and Sooke.

For commuting to campus, the #39 and #51 run on weekdays to and from UVIC. The #39 stops outside the Grant Building and the #51 stops at the entrance to campus on Sooke Road. 

The #52 covers Langford and Colwood and stops at the entrance to campus on Sooke Road.

The #50 runs daily every 10-15 minutes from downtown to Langford and stops a 15-minute walk from the campus, at the Western Exchange.

For additional information please visit BC Transit.

The Victoria Transit system is now linked to Google Maps, so it will show you the best options to get from one place to another at specific times of the day.Using the "Get Directions" feature of google maps, enter your start and end locations and then click on the transit icon to receive transit based information.

6. Can I opt-out of the U-Pass program?

The reduced cost of a U-Pass is made possible by the bulk purchasing power of our student body; therefore very few exemptions are possible from the U-Pass program.

A RRU Student who may opt out and qualify as an Exempted Student is a RRU Student that:

  1. has a demonstrated disability which has been verified by  RRU and who, as a result or his or her disability, cannot use conventional public transit or handyDART,
  2. holds a Government of BC Bus Pass issued by the BC Government as verified by RRU, or
  3. is a University of Victoria ("UVic") or Camosun College ("Camosun") student and is a holder of a U-PASS Card through the appropriate student societies.  It is intended that since such students pay their fees at UVic or Camosun, RRU will not assess a U-PASS fee upon presentation by the student of evidence that the U-PASS fee has already been paid via UVic or Camosun.

If you qualify for an exemption, please complete the exemption form and submit it along with accompanying documentation to Student Services, Grant 130, during the exemption period. The exemption submission period for 2012/2013 is September 1, 2012 to October 11, 2012.

If you have already purchased an annual pass from BC Transit, you may return that pass to BC Transit for a pro-rated refund.

7. Where do I get my U-Pass?

If you have been assessed the U-Pass Fee, your student ID card will function as your U-Pass. Student cards will have magnetic strips that will be encoded when students pick them up from University Reception and will function immediately on public transit. Your U-Pass is not transferable to another person. Transit drivers may confiscate a U-Pass if it appears to be misused.

8. What happens if my card doesn't work on the electronic fare box?

This would only occur if your encoding has been corrupted or due to a reader box error. The driver may ask you to pay full adult fare ($2.50) and will advise you to have the encoding fixed at University Reception. If another attempt is made to use this card before it is re-encoded, the card will be confiscated by the driver.

9. What happens if I lose my card or it is stolen?

If your student ID card/U-Pass is lost or stolen, it can be replaced at University Reception. When you request a replacement card (reminder: there is a $20+ tax replacement fee), all privileges from your old card will be automatically cancelled. The cancelled encode data will be stored at BC Transit, rendering the old card invalid and it will be confiscated by the driver if someone attempts to use it.

10. Will my U-Pass be refunded if I withdraw from my program?

All ancillary fees, including the U-Pass fee, are non-refundable; however, you may qualify for a partial tuition refund depending on when you withdraw from your program. For more information, please see the Refund Policy.

11. What if i join a program part way through the year?

For any student who enters a participating program part way through, we will explore the possibility of charging a pro-rated amount for the remaining months of the program. Please contact Student Services if you are entering/re-entering an on-campus, undergraduate program partway through the year and would like to participate in the U-Pass program.