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Hamilton Street Railway (HSR) Bus Pass

The MSU/HSR U-Pass PRESTO Card will be available for pick-up beginning August 19 at the Campus Store.  Read all the information below, as the new PRESTO enabled bus pass has new regulations and conditions.
 

By virtue of referendum, all full-time undergraduate students hold a 12 month, unlimited ride bus pass with the Hamilton Street Railway (HSR). New this year, the HSR bus pass is also a PRESTO card.

Eligible McMaster undergraduate and graduate students will receive their 2017-2018 HSR U-Pass pre-loaded on a PRESTO card. Students must tap their PRESTO card on the Fare Payment Device located just inside the front door of the bus, AND show their McMaster Student ID card to the bus operator.

DO NOT USE your new HSR U-Pass PRESTO card until Friday, September 1st, 2017 unless you are travelling on other transit systems and have loaded extra money on the card. If you tap the card on HSR in error, a bus fare will be applied to the card. Between August 26th – 31st, you only need to show your Student ID to the bus operator to board the bus.

A bi-fold card holder and a new MSU/HSR bus pass sticker will be provided at time of pick-up, inside the Campus Store. It is strongly recommended to use the card holder and place a sticker on your new HSR U-Pass PRESTO card, as to not confuse your new card with another PRESTO card. Put the HSR U-Pass PRESTO card under your student card in the bi-fold, as HSR drivers will require a student to tap onto the bus and show a student card to grant bus access.

ONCE YOU RECEIVE YOUR NEW HSR UPASS / PRESTO CARD, PLEASE REGISTER YOUR NEW CARD ONLINE.

As of September 1, rides on HSR are already paid for and loaded on the HSR U-Pass PRESTO card - you don’t need to add money onto your card to travel on HSR. Simply  tap your HSR U-Pass PRESTO card on the Fare Payment Device located just inside the front door of the bus, AND show your McMaster Student ID card to the bus operator.

The complete HSR U-Pass PRESTO card information brochure can be downloaded here.


HSR Bus Pass FAQ’s

Is there a grace period?
Where and when do eligible students pick-up their HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?
How does the HSR U-Pass PRESTO card work?
How do I get my HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?
What if I already have a PRESTO card?
Why should I open a "My PRESTO" account and how do I do it?
What happens if I lose my HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?
Caring for your PRESTO card
Which students are ELIGIBLE for the HSR bus pass?
Which students are NOT ELIGIBLE for the HSR bus pass?
Can part-time students (17 units or less) qualify?
Where do student see the HSR charge on their account?
What if a student is not in the HSR file?
More information regarding LOST / STOLEN / DAMAGED, or DEFECTIVE HSR U-Pass PRESTO cards


Is there a grace period?

To facilitate PRESTO card pick-up there will be a grace period in place through Friday, September 22, 2017. During this period any returning student that has not picked up their card will only need to show their Student ID to the bus operator to board the bus. Starting Saturday, September 23rd, all students will be required to tap their HSR U-Pass PRESTO card and show Student ID to board the bus.

Where and when do eligible students pick-up their HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?

All eligible students can pick-up their bus pass during store hours between August 19, 2017 and April 30, 2018 at any register in the main Campus Store location, Gilmour Hall B101. Due to its limited size the Health Sciences Campus Store, HSC 1G1 will only be distributing the bus passes to students in the Faculty of Health Science.

Students will need to present their valid Student ID card to pick-up their HSR Bus Pass at the Campus Store.

How does the HSR U-Pass PRESTO card work?

On every trip, just tap your HSR  U-Pass PRESTO card on the Fare Payment Device located just inside the front door of the bus. The system recognizes you are travelling with a valid HSR U-Pass PRESTO card and deducts nothing when riding on HSR– all in less than a second. When riding on other transit systems it will calculate the correct fare for your trip, and deduct the fare from the balance on your card. As the HSR U-Pass PRESTO card is only valid on the HSR, make sure you have money loaded on your PRESTO card if you make trips outside of HSR. You can load your new PRESTO card instantly at the Compass Information Centre, located one the first floor of the McMaster University Student Centre. 

How do I get my HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?

Starting August 19th, the Campus Store will begin distribution of the new HSR U-Pass PRESTO card. Eligible students must present their valid McMaster Student ID card to pick up their HSR U-Pass PRESTO card. The Campus Store, located in Gilmour Hall, will be the main distribution point for most students. The Health Sciences Campus Store location will have passes available exclusively for Faculty of Health Science students.

What if I already have a PRESTO card?

You will still need to pick up a new HSR U-Pass PRESTO card to travel on HSR. You can have the money on your existing PRESTO card immediately moved to your new HSR U-Pass PRESTO card by visiting the HSR Customer Service Centre located in the Hamilton GO Centre (36 Hunter St. E.). Or you can click on this link to fill out a refund form, print it, sign it, scan and e-mail the completed form to HSR-McM-Refunds@PrestoCard.ca

Using the e-mail option will add additional time as PRESTO will need to confirm cancellation of the existing card prior to issuing the refund.  (Minimum 6 weeks to receive cheque.)  Please note that if you choose either of these options, your old card will no longer be useable.  You can also continue to use your existing PRESTO card (example: rides on GO Transit) until the funds are depleted.  Please don’t load large amounts of money onto your existing card prior to receiving your new HSR U-Pass PRESTO card in August.

Why should I open a "My PRESTO" account and how do I do it?

By opening a “My PRESTO” Account, your card can be replaced if lost or stolen (for a fee) and the HSR U-Pass PRESTO card and/ or cash balance will be restored. You can open an account by going to the website www.PRESTOcard.ca. Once you have created your account, please register your card by clicking "Add an Existing Card."

Please note that if you already have an account, you may add this card to your current account by clicking "Add an Existing Card" in the "Manage" menu.

Your card is already activated. You do not need to activate it. Instead, you should register it. Check out our video tutorial to watch the registration process with instructions for both new PRESTO users and those who already use PRESTO.

This card belongs to you for your entire school career at McMaster. You will not be issued another card because the technology on the card will allow future year passes to be sent directly to you.

What happens if I lose my HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?

Read the complete LOST / STOLEN / DAMAGED HSR U-Pass PRESTO card brochure

If registered, visit a Customer Service Centre (Compass Information Centre on the main floor of MUSC, HSR Customer Service Centre, or GO Transit) to report it lost and buy a replacement card (fees will apply and there is an e-purse load minimum required). Contact PRESTO at 1.877.378.6123 to transfer the information from your old card to your new card. It could take up to 24 hours for the transfer to complete. If not registered, only Compass Information Centre can assist you. Please see more information about lost / stolen / damaged, or defective cards at the bottom of this page.

Caring for your PRESTO card:

The PRESTO card has an internal chip and antenna throughout the inside of the card. Cards CANNOT be punched or cut in any way, otherwise the card will no longer work and students will be responsible for the cost to replace the card. Students are also responsible for ensuring that cards are not damaged through misuse, bending or cracking, which may cause the card to stop functioning. Damaged cards can be replaced at Compass Information Centre.

Which students are ELIGIBLE for the HSR bus pass? 

  1. Undergraduate and Graduate Students who are registered in 18 units total (across both terms) are charged the HSR fee to their student account.
  2. Physician Assistants
  3. MELD Students
  4. Exchange students will not see a charge on their account as the student pays tuition through their home institution.  Exchange students should appear in the HSR bus pass file. If they do not they should contact the Student Accounts office via email at studacct@mcmaster.ca.
  5. Part-time students with disabilities can apply to become MSU students.  This application must be approved and processed in order for the student to appear in the HSR Bus pass file.

Which students are NOT ELIGIBLE for the HSR bus pass?

  1. Undergraduate students enrolled in 17 units or less (across both terms)
  2. Engineering Co-op students
  3. Part-Time Graduate students
  4. MBA students (all)
  5. Divinity College students (all)
  6. Continuing Education students
  7. Medicine students (with the exception of Physician Assistants)
  8. Midwifery students

Can part-time students (17 units or less) qualify?

Part-time students can qualify under certain circumstances.  Additional details can be found online.  Students can apply for a transfer beginning September 14, 2017 continuing for 30 days.  If a student does qualify to move from MAPS to MSU and the transfer is approved, the HSR fee will be applied to their account along with other MSU related fees within seven business days.  One business day following the HSR Fee appearing on the student’s account, a student can visit the Campus Store to pick up their HSR U-Pass Presto card.

Where do student see the HSR charge on their account?

The path for students to review is Student Centre>Finances>other financial drop down box>Account Activity.  The cost for each career is:

Undergraduate (MSU) - $187.67

Graduate (GSA) - $232.70

What if a student is not in the HSR file?

  • If a student is not in the HSR Student PRESTO card distribution file they should determine if they are eligible (see above).  If the student is eligible they should check their MOSAIC account to ensure they’ve been assessed the HSR fee.  The student should confirm the date this charge was applied to their account, remembering it takes 1 business day for their ID number to show up in the HSR Student PRESTO card distribution file.  If it’s been more than 1 business day since the HSR fee was charged and the student still is not in the HSR Student PRESTO card distribution file the student should email the Student Accounts office at studacct@mcmaster.ca
     
  • If the student has not been assessed the fee but feel they are eligible to receive a HSR pass (see above) they should email the Student Accounts office at studacct@mcmaster.ca

MORE INFORMATION REGARDING LOST / STOLEN / DAMAGED, OR DEFECTIVE HSR U-Pass PRESTO cards:

READ the complete LOST / STOLEN / DAMAGED HSR U-Pass PRESTO card brochure

You need to report your lost or stolen card by immediately contacting PRESTO either
online or by phone at 1-877-378-6123. If your card is damaged, please visit Compass Information Centre.

If you registered your card before it was lost or stolen, visit a Customer Service Centre (Compass Information Centre, HSR Customer Service Centre or GO Transit) to report it lost and purchase a replacement card for $16 ($6 card issuance fee plus a $10 minimum load). Once you have your replacement card, contact PRESTO to have any e-purse funds and HSR U-Pass transferred onto the new card. DO NOT register the new card before contacting PRESTO.

If you DID NOT register your HSR U-Pass PRESTO card before it was lost or stolen, you need to visit Compass Information Centre to obtain the 17-digit PRESTO card number and 3-digit security number for the card that was issued to you. You then need to register your lost PRESTO card using the information provided by Compass. Once the card is registered you then need to report it lost. You must pay the $25 replacement fee and you will be issued a new PRESTO card. Once you have your replacement card, contact PRESTO to have any e-purse funds and HSR U-Pass transferred onto the new card. DO NOT register the new card before contacting PRESTO.

What if my card is defective?

The Campus Store is responsible for the initial distribution of bus passes.  All replacement cards are handled by Compass Information Centre located on the first floor of MUSC.   Please note, defective cards will be replaced at Compass Information Centre for no cost. Damaged cards will be replaced at a cost of $16 ($6 card issuance fee plus a $10 minimum load), provided the card is registered.

A card may be defective if it is not recognized by the PRESTO fare payment device when tapped, even if it looks normal.  The defective card must be relinquished at the time of receiving the replacement card for no cost. Visit the Compass Information Centre to receive a replacement card ($6 card issuance fee waived but only if determined to be defective and not damgaed, e.g. cracked or worn). The defective card will be retained. Once you receive your replacement card, follow the “What happens if I lose my HSR U-Pass PRESTO card?”, as explained above.

Updated: Friday August 25