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ECO Pass for Faculty and Staff

ECO Pass provides faculty and staff unlimited access to all regional MTS and NCTD mass transit bus and trolley/light rail routes at a 25% discount. ECO Pass is a 30-day recurring regional transit pass through MTS Compass Card.

ECO Pass is NOT valid for use with these services:

  • NCTD: Coaster Train, FLEX and LIFT
  • MTS: Rural Routes (888, 891, 892 and 894), Rapid Express Routes (currently 270, 280 and 290) and Access

Free Trial

The ECO Pass promotion and all in-office Compass Card reloads are unavailable during the COVID-19 office closure. If you want to reload your existing Compass Card or purchase a transit pass, you may do so online at the regular MTS full-price rate.

How to Enroll

Free ECO Pass Trial

Eligibility Requirements

  • If you purchased an annual permit that will expire June 30, 2020, you must complete the Parking Permit Cancellation/Refund Form and return it with your parking permit to the sales desk at the Gilman or Osler Commuter and Visitor Information Center before you are eligible for the ECO Pass trial. Transportation Services prorates refunds based on the parking sales refund policy. Special exceptions may allow return of quarterly or limited parking permits to establish ECO Pass trial eligibility.
  • You must be an active UC San Diego faculty or staff member who works at the La Jolla campus or UC San Diego Health – La Jolla or Hillcrest.
  • You cannot be an active Pedal Club, Coaster Club, carpool or vanpool program member with an active quarterly incentive permit.
  • You cannot purchase a monthly, quarterly, annual or multiyear parking permit during the trial period.
  • You must not have purchased an ECO Pass during the current fiscal year July 1 through June 30
  • You can only participate in the free trial promotion once.

Terms and Charges

  • ECO Pass will be free Dec. 16, 2019 through March 31, 2020. Transportation Services will automatically deduct a:
  • ECO Pass is for personal use only and may not be sold, transferred or used by any other individual.
  • If your eligibility changes or you purchase any of the listed disqualifying permits during the trial period, Transportation Services may terminate your ECO Pass.
  • This is a pilot program and subject to change.

ECO Pass Enrollment

To enroll in the ECO Pass program, faculty and staff must:

  • Sign up for payroll deduction by completing the Transit Pass Payroll Authorization/Cancellation Form. The $54/month payroll deduction purchase of a transit pass qualifies as a pre-tax payment. One payroll deduction enrollment per person per fiscal year is allowed.
  • Bring the completed form to the Gilman or Osler Commuter and Visitor Information Center. You will also need:
    • Your UC San Diego photo ID
    • Two months advanced payment using cash, check or credit card (to cover pass costs until payroll deduction begins). Note: Transportation Services does not issue refunds for 30-Day or 60-Day passes and advanced purchases loaded over the counter.
Eligible campus employees may also purchase a 30-Day ECO Pass Compass Card and reloads with cash, check or credit card at the Gilman or Osler Commuter and Visitor Information Center.


If you no longer wish to participate in the ECO Pass program, you may cancel at any time by submitting a Transit Pass Payroll Authorization/Cancellation Form by the 15th of the preceding month. All automatic payments are final unless canceled by the 15th of the month (no refunds).

Senior and Disabled Passes

Eligible employees age 65+ may sign up at the $23/month senior rate instead of enrolling in ECO Pass. Bring your government-issued photo ID card with proof of birth date and UC San Diego photo ID card to sign up at the Gilman or Osler Commuter and Visitor Information Center.

Seniors must provide a state-issued driver’s license, government-issued photo identification card, or an Senior/Disabled/Medicare Compass Card with integral photo identification when purchasing a Senior Pass or boarding a transit vehicle with a Senior Pass.

Transportation Services:

  • Does not qualify or issue Compass Cards for Persons with Disabilities or Medicare (see MTS Senior/Disabled/Medicare Discounted Fares)
  • Is authorized to sell and add Senior/Disabled/Medicare fares to Compass Cards of eligible persons qualified as UC San Diego eligible affiliates.

Using ECO Pass

  • The UC San Diego ECO Pass is an MTS Compass Card.
  • Activate by tapping your card on a fare validator; MTS recommends that users tap at least once by the 14th of the usage month. Learn more about Compass Card and how it works.
  • Once you sign up for payroll deduction, your ECO Pass renews automatically and confirms your fare when you tap it on the fare validator. Note: MTS pass renewal is based on a 30-day cycle and up to five days of fares each year may not be covered by your ECO Pass. You should be prepared to pay your fare in cash at your expense if this situation occurs.
  • UC San Diego issued ECO Pass Compass Cards are not transferable. No refunds.
  • To cancel ECO Pass and automatic payroll deduction, you must submit a new Transit Pass Payroll Authorization/Cancellation Form (PDF) by the 15th of the month before the change is to be effective to ensure adequate time to cancel payroll deductions.
  • All Compass Cards have a physical expiration date. You are responsible for ensuring that your Compass Card is active. Most cards are valid for 5–10 years. If your Compass Card expires, it cannot access the electronically updated monthly fare. You can find your Compass Card expiration date by:
    • Checking the “REPLACE CARD BY” date that appears on the back of your card in the upper right corner
    • Visiting the Compass Card website and entering your card’s 16-digit serial number that appears above the black bar in the lower right corner
    • Calling the Compass Service Center, (619) 595-5636
    • Note: If your Compass Card expires within the next six months and you want to avoid potential service disruption, you can visit Commute Solutions in the Gilman Parking Structure Office to get a free replacement card.
  •  Report problems with your Compass Card immediately to MTS. 
    • Call (619) 557-4555, weekdays 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; during non-business hours, leave a recorded message.
    • You can also complete the MTS Contact Form.

Compass Card Replacement

  • Transportation Services does not issue refunds or replacements for lost/stolen Compass Cards or passes loaded at the counter. All Compass Cards loaded with 30-day or 60-day passes paid for with cash, check or credit card are not replaceable and should be treated just like cash.
  • Only Compass Cards loaded on the monthly PPB (Pre-Paid Benefit) may be replaced. A $15 replacement fee and new Compass Card may take up to one week to process. The user is responsible for fare payment until MTs processes your replacement.


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