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The RIDE Policies

the ride rowes wharf

Temporary Changes to The RIDE

Updated January 11, 2022

All riders and drivers are required to wear face coverings while on MBTA vehicles, including people who are fully vaccinated. 

The RIDE is not a medical transport, and we cannot provide service to customers with an active COVID diagnosis. The RIDE is small-vehicle public transit, and it is not possible to safely distance riders with COVID from others, including the driver. If you are or have been ill with COVID, you must make transportation arrangements other than The RIDE until you have been medically cleared.  

If The RIDE transports you to a COVID testing site and you are confirmed to be COVID positive, we cannot transport you home after the positive test.  

As part of the continuing effort to protect the health and safety of customers and MBTA employees, and to preserve the continuity of essential travel services, the following service changes have been made in consultation with The Riders’ Transportation Access Group (R-TAG), the Boston Center for Independent Living, and the Massachusetts Senior Action Council. 

Traveling with Guests

Let The RIDE know if you’ll be traveling with anyone else, including a service animal, when you book your trip. Guests must travel with you, to and from the same destination.

Keep in mind that your guests’ fares will be deducted from your RIDE account when you board.

Traveling with Service Animals

Only service animals, as defined by the ADA, will be transported.

  • Service animals must ride tethered, leashed, or harnessed at their owner’s feet, not on the seat. Carriers are not allowed.
  • Owners must have control over their service animals at all times. 
  • Other animals—including pets, comfort animals or therapy animals—are not allowed. Transportation will not be provided to those who do not follow this policy at time of pick-up.

Rider Etiquette

Please remember that The RIDE is a shared space, and respect your fellow passengers, drivers, and transportation equipment. Follow these rider rules:


  • Wear a seatbelt—this applies to all riders, including wheelchair and scooter users.
  • Use headphones with personal audio devices.
  • Note that personal hygiene and perfumes can be objectionable to other passengers or cause allergic reactions.
  • Ask the driver to adjust the radio, including turning it on/off, changing the station, and turning the volume up or down.


  • Stand while the vehicle is moving.
  • Eat or drink, unless you need to for medical or dietary reasons. Let the driver know if this is the case.
  • Have loud conversations on your cellphone.
  • Expect drivers to carry multiple packages in more than one trip.
  • Smoke, including e-cigarettes.
  • Tip your driver or give other gratuities.

Inappropriate or illegal behavior will not be tolerated, and may result in service suspension, police investigation, or other consequences.

Personal Items

Please limit bulky, heavy items whenever possible. Your driver must be able to carry them in one trip while safely assisting you.  

Transportation will not be provided to customers who do not follow this policy at the time of pick-up. 

Late Cancelation/No-Show Policy

Late cancelation

Any trip canceled less than one hour before the scheduled pick-up time is a late cancelation violation. Changing the time of your trip is not considered a late cancelation, but please provide advance notice of changes to minimize disruptions in service.


If you are not at the pick-up location within five minutes of the driver’s arrival and the driver is unable to contact you, it is a no-show violation. 

If you are delayed, call TRAC as soon as possible at 844-427-7433 to request a new pick-up time. This will result in a charge at the premium non-ADA fare rate. TRAC will do its best to incorporate your modified trip request into the day’s schedule.

Keeping Rider Information Up to Date

Riders’ personal information must be kept up to date. There are several ways to update information for The RIDE depending on the type of change needed:

ADA Compliance

The RIDE is a public transportation service. The MBTA may change or update policies and still be ADA-compliant. Visit the ADA’s website or call 888-446-4511 (voice) or 800-877-8339 (TTY) for more information.

The RIDE Guide

customer boarding the ride with lift

Download a PDF version of the important information that explains how to get started with The RIDE.

The RIDE Guide

customer boarding the ride with lift

Download a PDF version of the important information that explains how to get started with The RIDE.