Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions for BC Transit Riders

Top Questions

What is Umo?

Umo is BC Transit’s new contactless fare payment system that allows you to pay for your fare with the payment method and fare product that best suits your lifestyle and travel habits.

Is cash still accepted?

Yes, you can still use cash to pay for your fare aboard the bus. You can also use cash to buy a fare product for your reloadable Umo card through a BC Transit fare product vendor. 

I’m unsure if I should use the Umo app or reloadable card, which one is recommended?

As the app provides riders with additional travel tools including real-time information, maps, and alerts, it is BC Transit’s recommended fare product for riders with access to a mobile device.

Can I use the Umo app and card at the same time interchangeably?

No. Security features in the Umo system prohibit two payment methods to be linked to an account at one time.

What transit systems have Umo?

Currently, Umo is operational in the Victoria Regional, Cowichan Valley Regional, Regional District of Nanaimo, Comox Valley Regional, Campbell River, Port Alberni Regional, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, Powell River Regional, Central Fraser Valley, Chilliwack, Agassiz-Harrison, and Hope Regional transit systems.

Will my transit system implement Umo?

Across the province, 30 transit systems are scheduled to implement Umo. Umo will be launched in the following order: Victoria Regional, Cowichan Valley Regional, Regional District of Nanaimo, Comox Valley Regional, Campbell River, Port Alberni Regional, Powell River Regional, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, Central Fraser Valley, Chilliwack, Agassiz-Harrison, Hope Regional, Kamloops, Vernon Regional, Kelowna Regional, South Okanagan-Similkameen, Prince George, Quesnel, Fort St. John, Dawson Creek, Kitimat, Terrace Regional, Skeena Regional, Prince Rupert, Port Edward, West Kootenay, Cranbrook, Pemberton Valley, and Whistler.

About Umo

What is Umo?

Umo is BC Transit’s new contactless fare payment system that allows you to pay for your fare with the payment method and fare product that best suits your lifestyle and travel habits.

What does the name Umo mean?

Umo was named to convey that you, our riders, are put at the forefront of mobility. Umo stands for the combination of you + motion, you + move, and you + mobile. Technically it’s pronounced “you-mo” but please don’t stress about it.

Why did BC Transit implement Umo?

BC Transit’s current fare collection equipment was at its end of life and needed to be modernized to align with today’s industry standards and our riders’ expectations.

Payment Methods

Is cash still accepted?

Yes, you can still use cash to pay for your fare aboard the bus, but we think you’ll find one of Umo’s payment methods a more convenient choice.

You can also use cash to buy a fare product for your reloadable Umo card when loading it through a BC Transit fare product vendor.

I’m unsure if I should use the Umo app or reloadable card, which one is recommended?

As the app provides riders with additional travel tools including real-time information, maps, and alerts, it is BC Transit’s recommended fare product for riders with access to a mobile device.

Can I share my Umo payment method?

Unless using cash, all riders are required to carry their own payment method. This includes individuals riding as a group. 

Can I change my Umo payment method from a Umo card to an app and
vice versa?

Umo payment methods can not be used interchangeably, and you must choose only one.

To swap from a Umo card to the Umo app: After funding a Umo card you are able to download the Umo Mobility app and follow the app’s instructions to transfer your card’s balance to the app. Once the transfer has been completed the card will be void and unable to be used again.

To swap from the Umo app to a Umo card: To transfer your app’s loaded fare products to a Umo card, please pick up a Umo card from a BC Transit vendor and call Umo Customer Service at 877-380-8181.

Can I use my credit or debit card to pay my fare aboard the bus?

Payments by debit and credit card are not currently functionable but are planned to be enabled soon.

Mobile App

What is the Umo App?

The Umo Mobility App is a convenient travel tool that enables you to seamlessly manage your trip and pay for your fare in one central place.

Why can’t I find the Umo app in the app store?

The app can be found in both Canadian Apple App and Google Play stores by searching “Umo Mobility”. Please note that you must be connected to a Canadian app store to download the Umo Mobility app that will connect to BC Transit services. 

Do I have to create a Umo account to use the app?

Yes, you need to create an account with a unique username like an email address or phone number to use the app. BC Transit recommends using an email address as your username to support account recovery in the event you forget your password.

How do I buy a pass in the Umo app?

Once you have the Umo Mobility app downloaded, you can buy your favourite fare product in the app by tapping the Wallet icon. From there, select Passes > Buy a pass > choose your desired pass > Purchase. On the Payment Method screen, enter your payment details and tap Continue to complete the transaction.

How do I buy a Cash Balance in the Umo app?

Once you have the Umo Mobility app downloaded, you can buy your favourite fare product in the app by tapping the Wallet icon. From there, select Cash Balance > Add Cash > choose your desired amount > Purchase. On the Payment Method screen, enter your payment details and tap Continue to complete the transaction.

Do I need to use cellular data to use the Umo app?

No. As long as you have a fare loaded to your Umo account, your app will make the connection and validate your fare product if you have cellular data turned off or in an area outside of cellular service. The mobile app does not need to use data to validate your fare.

How do I change my language in the Umo App?

In the app’s menu, select Settings > Preferred Language for Umo > and select your desired language.

Umo Card

What is a Umo Card?

A Umo Card increases your access to transit by removing the need to continually visit a retail vendor to purchase your fare product. A Umo card is reloadable and designed for continued use. Cards can be topped up at a retail vendor, online at ca.umopass.com, and through Umo’s customer service number at 877-380-8181. Once you have a fare product loaded to your Umo card, simply hop onboard and tap at on the new validation located beside the bus driver.

How much does a Umo card cost?

Nothing. Umo cards are free for all riders and do not require a deposit. Please help BC Transit to be able to continue to offer these cards for free by reloading and using your card again and again.

Can I reuse my Umo card?

Yes. Umo cards have been designed to act as your long-term fare product and should be used again and again.

Where can I pick up my Umo card?

Reloadable Umo cards can be picked up for free from any vendor who chooses to sell BC Transit Umo fare products. Please visit your transit system’s Fares page and look under Where to Buy for a list of participating Umo vendors. Vendors that sell Umo fare products are identified with a Umo sticker to the right of their name. BC Transit is actively working with vendors to increase the number of vendors selling Umo fare products.

How do I buy a pass for my Umo card?

You have several options to purchase a pass for use via your Umo card. You may buy a pass in-person through a BC Transit Umo vendor, online at ca.umopass.com, or over the phone through Umo’s Customer Service line at 877-380-8181.

If you are buying a pass for your Umo card online, you will need to create a Umo account with a unique username which can be an email address or phone number. BC Transit recommends using an email address as your username.

Can I buy products for my Umo card using the Umo app?

No, to manage your card account online, you’ll need to visit ca.umopass.com.

How do I buy a Cash Balance for my Umo card?

You have several options to purchase a Cash Balance for use via your Umo card. You may buy a Cash Balance in-person through a BC Transit Umo vendor, online at ca.umopass.com, or over the phone through Umo’s Customer Service line at 877-380-8181.

If you are loading a Cash Balance for your Umo card online, you will need to create a Umo account with a unique username like an email address or phone number. BC Transit recommends using an email address as your username.

What should I do if I lose my Umo card?

Please call Umo customer service toll-free at 877-380-8181. If your card was registered, you can pick up a new card from a Umo vendor and call the call centre to have your fare products transferred to the new Umo card. Once your products have been loaded to the new Umo card, your original card will be deactivated.

If I replace a lost card and then find the missing card afterwards can I use the once lost card again?

No. Once a Umo card is deactivated, the lost or missing card becomes permanently void and will no longer work.

Does Umo accept orange and blue Compass cards?

No. Orange and blue Compass cards are TransLink fare products are not accepted on BC Transit services. While cross-service functionality with other transit providers is BC Transit’s long-term vision for Umo, it is not currently functional. 

Will Umo accept my BC Bus Pass (red Compass Card)?

BC Bus Passes are still accepted on BC Transit services. Please continue to flash your pass to the transit operator upon boarding the bus. You do not need to interact with the new Umo validator.

Onboard Experience

How do I validate my Umo app aboard the bus?

When you are ready to travel, please have your payment ready prior to stepping aboard the bus. If you are using the Umo app, select Validation Code to display your account’s dynamic QR code. Aboard the bus, present your QR code to the centre of the Umo validator below the green Scan Below sticker. The display on the validator will confirm your successful fare payment with a checkmark and audible single beep notification.

I’m having trouble validating my Umo app. What should I do?

Don’t worry, it can take a few times validating your app’s QR code before you get the hang of it. Transit Operators are aware of this, so please don’t stress. Three suggestions to speed up your app validation are:

  1. Have your app open to the QR code prior to setting aboard the bus.
  2. Turn up your phone’s screen brightness or turn off power save mode if your phone model does not don’t automatically brighten your screen when you click on the QR code.
  3. Hold your phone back from the onboard validator to display the entire QR code.
How do I validate my Umo Card aboard the bus?

When you are ready to travel, please have your payment ready prior to stepping aboard the bus. Upon boarding the bus, tap your card within two inches of the green Tap Here sticker.  The display on the validator will confirm your successful fare payment with a checkmark and audible single beep notification.

How do I know if my fare was accepted?

The Umo validator will display a checkmark on the response screen and produce a single audible beep informing you that your fare has been accepted.

Why did the Umo validator display a yellow checkmark instead of the green checkmark I’m used to seeing?

A yellow checkmark signals that your fare was accepted but your remaining cash balance has dipped below $2.50 or your pass is set to expire within 72 hours.

Should I tap/scan my Umo payment method as I depart the bus?

No. Please only tap your Umo card or scan your Umo app once upon boarding the bus.

Fare Products

What is Cash Balance? How dose it work with a DayPASS or transfer?

Cash Balance is a new fare product BC Transit offers through the Umo app or reloadable card. A Cash Balance is a sum of money loaded to a rider’s Umo account that gets deducted from as additional trips are taken.

In transit systems that offer a DayPASS, Umo will cap your Cash Balance payment method after your second trip of the day, meaning that you’ll never pay more than the value of a DayPASS when using a Umo payment method.

In transit systems that offer a transfer, an electronic transfer will be automatically applied to your Umo payment method allowing for continued travel on a second bus within 90-minutes of departure without incurring an additional fare.  Please tap or scan your original payment method on your second bus to continue to travel without incurring an additional charge.

How is a 30-Day Pass different from a Monthly Pass?

A 30-Day Pass is a new fare product that provides you with the same long-term benefits of unlimited travel a Monthly Pass offers but can now be started on any day of the calendar month. A 30-Day Pass will kick in on the date of its first use, not purchase.

How will Umo know the difference between a pass and Stored Value fare
products?

Both pass and Stored Value fare products can be loaded to a reloadable Umo card or the Umo app at the same time. If you have both loaded, Umo will apply your fare to a pass first, saving your stored value funds for future use.

Will BC Transit still offer a DayPASS, how will that work?

Yes, riders in transit systems that offer a DayPASS can still purchase a paper DayPASS aboard the bus with cash or two tickets.

Additionally, riders using a Umo payment method will receive an electronic DayPASS applied to their Umo app or card after validation on their second trip of the day, allowing them to ride for free for the remainder of the day. In transit systems that offer a DayPASS, Umo will always cap a rider’s Cash Balance payment after their second trip off the day, meaning they will always receive the same value as a DayPASS when riding with Umo.

Can I use a Umo payment method to pay for my fare on an interregional/commuter route?

Yes. Once Umo is operational in the transit systems linked with the interregional route, Umo can be used. Please note these routes may require a different fare product. Please check your transit system’s fare web page or look in the Pass section in your Umo app’s Wallet for this information.

How do I set my fare product to automatically reload?

There are two ways to set your Cash Balance or 30-Day Pass to automatically reload for your Umo app or Umo card.

Online:

  1. Log into ca.umopass.com with your Umo account credentials
  2. Select your desired fare product select Autoload
  3. Complete your payment

Call Centre:

  1. Call 877-380-8181 toll-free to speak to a Umo customer service agent
Can I still use tickets as my fare product?

Yes, you can still purchase and use tickets but plans for fare product availability may change in your transit system several months after Umo is launched. With the exception of handyDART services, several transit systems plan to remove tickets from fare product offerings in the future in lieu of Umo’s convenient Cash Balance fare product.

Is my current Monthly or Semester Pass still valid?

All Monthly Passes will be accepted until the pass’ expiry date.

What will happen to the Monthly Pass fare product?

With the exception of handyDART services, Monthly Pass fare products will be removed from circulation in favour of the convenient 30-Day Pass available through the Umo app or reloadable Umo card several months after Umo is launched in a transit system.

ProPASS

I’m currently a ProPASS holder. How do I update my pass to work with Umo?

If you haven’t received communications from your organization’s ProPASS administrator, please reach out to them for your next steps. If you need additional help from the information that was provided, please call Umo Customer Service at 877-380-8181.

Am I able to use both the Umo app and reloadable card at the same time interchangeably?

No. ProPASS riders, just like standard riders, must choose one payment method and cannot interchangeably use the card and the app at the same time. If you are undecided and have access to a mobile device, please consider using BC Transit’s recommended payment method – the Umo Mobility app, as the app provides riders with additional travel tools including real-time information, maps, and alerts.

Will Umo impact the current cost of my ProPASS?
No.

U-PASS

How does my U-Pass work with Umo?

All BC Transit U-Pass institutions have selected to offer their students the choice of using the Umo app or a reloadable card. U-Pass riders, just like standard riders, must choose one payment method and cannot interchangeably use the mobile app and card at the same time.

Prior to the start of your school term, your school will provide you with information about your school’s unique process that involves redeeming a Umo benefit code to a Umo account. Once redeemed, you will be able to use your choice of payment method – mobile app or reloadable card, to validate your fare each time you ride the bus.

General

Where can I get more information?

Visit bctransit.com/umo for more information or call BC Transit’s dedicated Umo Customer Service line toll-free at 877-380-8181 for additional support.

What are Umo alerts?

Umo alerts are automated messages that you can opt-in and out of to support your transit experience. Alerts can be set to notify you of a low Cash Balance or if your fare product is set to expire plus several other useful functions.

Can I link Umo accounts to support dependant riders?

Yes, riders can link accounts with other riders to buy them Stored Value and pass fare products. To link an account:

  1. Log into the Umo Passenger Portal at ca.umopass.com.
  2. On the My Wallet tab, under Linked Accounts, click Link an Account. 
  3. In the Link an account window, enter the Umo card number that you want to link to. 
  4. (Optional) Create a nickname for the link-to account, so you can easily refer to it. 
  5. Once you've entered the link-to card number, click Link an Account. 

The linked account now appears under Accounts You Can Purchase For on the My Wallet tab. You can make fare product purchases on their behalf that can be used immediately.

What transit systems have Umo?

Currently, Umo is operational in the Victoria Regional, Cowichan Valley Regional, Regional District of Nanaimo, Comox Valley Regional, Campbell River, Port Alberni Regional, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, and Powell River Regional  transit systems.

Will my transit system implement Umo?

Across the province, 30 transit systems are scheduled to implement Umo. Umo will be launched in the following order: Victoria Regional, Cowichan Valley Regional, Regional District of Nanaimo, Comox Valley Regional, Campbell River, Port Alberni Regional, Powell River Regional, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, Central Fraser Valley, Chilliwack, Agassiz-Harrison, Hope Regional, Kamloops, Vernon Regional, Kelowna Regional, South Okanagan-Similkameen, Prince George, Quesnel, Fort St. John, Dawson Creek, Kitimat, Terrace Regional, Skeena Regional, Prince Rupert, Port Edward, West Kootenay, Cranbrook, Pemberton Valley, and Whistler.

What happens if my bus stop is out of cellular service range?

Umo will continue to work even if you or the bus you are boarding outside of cellular service. Both Umo cards and apps will continue to validate while the onboard validator temporarily stores your Umo card or app’s linked account and processes your validation as soon as the bus returns to service.

What happens if my cellular network goes down? Will I still be able to get on a
bus?

Yes, our transit drivers will continue to prioritize people over payments.

Will BC Transit charge credit card fees for loading a Umo card or mobile app?

No, BC Transit and our fare vendors will not pass along payment processing fees.

Is Umo operational on handyDART services?

No. The current project to implement Umo is only targeting conventional transit services.

Contact Us

Umo Customer Service can be reached at 877-380-8181 from:

7:00 am to 7:00 pm Monday – Friday

8:00 am to 4:00 pm Saturday and Sunday