Metrolink, Southern California’s regional rail service, will begin a new Kids Ride Free on Weekends promotion Saturday, Aug. 29, allowing up to three children per family to ride free across the Southland’s six counties when accompanied by a fare-paying adult.
Children must be 17 years old or younger to qualify for a free ticket.
The weekend-only promotion will also offer adults a discounted $10 ride to any Metrolink station.
“After being cooped up we know folks are ready to change their routines with fun, yet safe, activities for the entire family,” Metrolink Board Chair Brian Humphrey said in a statement this week. “When you ride the train, the journey is a part of the experience and we want families to enjoy a special and affordable train experience as they explore the many outdoor activities we all love about Southern California.”
Metrolink has 60 stations throughout Southern California and its double-decker trains travel along scenic routes with views of mountains, oceans and cities. A bike car on every train allows for families to bring bicycles, surfboards, beach and picnic gear.
“The Metrolink experience is centered around the needs and enjoyment of our customers – all of them,” Metrolink CEO Stephanie Wiggins said in the statement. “We are thrilled to be able to offer families a safe and exciting experience that’s also affordable, particularly in these uncertain times.”
But with the coronavirus still a threat, Metrolink will require certain safety precautions.
Face masks, for example, are required aboard all Metrolink trains and on station platforms. Metrolink has also implemented new deep cleaning protocols including, an electrostatic sprayer that mists each train car with hospital-grade disinfectants every day, and an expanded Clean Care Crew that thoroughly disinfects trains throughout the day.
Metrolink also offers an online tool — called “How Full is My Train?” — where riders can check any train’s recent ridership levels to allow for easier social distancing while aboard.
Metrolink stations, though, tend to be dispersed. There is no such station in Long Beach or LA County’s South Bay, for example. The closest stop for those areas is the Los Angeles Union Station. Long Beach residents would have to take LA Metro’s A Line to the 7th Street Metro Center and transfer to the Metro D Line, which is a quick ride to Union Station.
If you go
What: Metrolink’s Ride Free promotion
Where: More than 60 train stations across Southern California
When: Saturdays and Sundays, beginning Aug. 29
Source: Orange County Register