Free Muni for Youth Program

The SFMTA launched the Free Muni for Youth Pilot Program on March 1, 2013. This program provides low and moderate income students residing in San Francisco free access to Muni for a 16-month period when using a Clipper. The SFMTA Board of Directors has approved continuing this program indefinitely as part of the Fiscal Year 2015 and 2016 budget.  No action is required on the part of existing program participants to continue in this program.  

Please contact the Clipper Customer Service Center (1.877.878.8883) if your child's card has been lost, stolen, or is not working.  

All San Francisco youth aged 5 to17 with a gross annual family income at or below 100 percent of the Bay Area Median Income level are eligible for the program according to the chart below.

Household Size 100% Bay Area Median Income
2 $82,400
3 $92,700
4 $103,000
5 $111,250
6 $119,500
7 $127,700
8 $135,950 

How to Sign-Up for Free Muni for Youth

This pilot pass will be loaded onto a Clipper card.

If you have a registered youth Clipper card:

If you do not have a youth Clipper card, print and fill out the program application form, attach supporting documentation establishing proof of age, and mail or drop off your application at the SFMTA (at the address listed above). You will receive your Clipper card loaded with your pilot pass in the mail.

Important Note: All fields of the application must be completed and a copy of an approved document to verify age (for new Clipper card customers) must be attached. You must be between the ages of 5 and 17 (children under 5 ride free) and a resident of San Francisco to participate in the program.

Please allow up to three weeks to process existing Clipper card applications and up to five for new cards.

Free language assistance is available by calling 311 within the city or 415.701.2311 outside of San Francisco.

Frequently Asked Questions

I submitted an application, but have not received a new Clipper card for my child. When will I receive it in the mail?
If you submitted your application four or more weeks ago and have not received the new Clipper card, your application was unable to be processed. You will need to reapply for the program. Please ensure that your application is filled out legibly and completely, and includes a copy of one of the required documents to establish age.

I submitted an application with my child’s existing Clipper card but have not received notification that the application was accepted. How long should it take?
SFMTA has not mailed confirmation notices to participants who applied online after March 1; however, it is likely that the pass has already been added to your card.  To verify, tag the card on a Clipper card reader on any Muni vehicle or at a Metro station faregate and you should receive a message that a pass was used/valid fare payment. If you receive a “Low Funds” message or the gate does not open, please resubmit an application to the program. For faster processing, use the online application.

My child has lost the Clipper card that I originally applied for the program with. How do I apply without it?
Call Clipper Customer Service at 1.877.878.8883 to apply for a new card.  If there is a record of the pilot pass on your child’s lost card, they will automatically transfer the pass to the new card. If they have no record, you will be instructed to reapply to the program. 

I received notification that my child’s Clipper card was activated with a pass, but when they tag it they receive a message indicating “Low Funds.” Why isn't it working?
It may be that the wrong Clipper card number was provided, the number was for a card registered to an adult, the applicant is not eligible or there was an error in activating the pass.  Please resubmit an application by mail.

Do I need to reapply each month to qualify for the program?
No.  Once you are deemed eligible for the program you will be enrolled for the entire duration of the pilot, or until the day of your 18th birthday, whichever comes first.

What happens if I turn 18 during the pilot period?
The pass is only available for youth 17 and under. Once you turn 18 your pilot pass will no longer be valid and you must purchase an adult monthly Muni pass or pay the adult single cash fare.

What do I do if I lose my card?
Contact Clipper Customer Service at 1.877.878.8883. A new Clipper card will be issued and the pilot pass will automatically be transferred.  You do not need to reapply. Please allow up to two weeks to receive your new card. There is a $5 fee for new cards.

What if I do not have any of the required documents to obtain a Clipper card?
If you cannot provide any of the documents listed in the application to verify proof of age, please call 311 for assistance.

My child is not five yet.  When should I apply?
Muni service is free for all children under five. Please submit your application for the program within four weeks of your child’s fifth birthday.

How do I use my Clipper card?
You must tag your Clipper card to the card reader each time you board a vehicle or enter a station faregate. Tagging your Clipper card will serve as proof of payment, electronically confirming that you have a valid fare. Your pass is not valid for Bay to Breakers or Candlestick Park special event service.

Will my information be shared?
Use of this pass is subject to the Clipper Privacy Policy. For the purpose of evaluating the pilot program, you may receive requests to participate in focus groups or to provide feedback on the program.

Have other questions? Please call 311 or 415.701.2311 from outside of San Francisco.