And we have our answer!

So, here’s how it all went: we decided we wanted to have this Culture Bus party (which you should totally come to). We checked the Culture Bus site: fare is listed as $7. Wondering did fares go up on July 1 like all the other ones did?, I called 311 the way the MTA site told me to. $7, I was told by a very nice woman who laughed when I asked about the fare increase. “That one didn’t have a fare increase, they knew they were going to discontinue it” she said.

I sent a preliminary email regarding the ride with basically the same information as in our post, including the $7 bit. This email went to folks including Muni spokesperson Judson True, who I know got the email because he wrote back. No fare correction was forthcoming.

I start to write the article you guys read, and realize I’m not sure if TransLink works on teh Culture Bus (you know, like how it doesn’t work on cable cars?) I call 311 again, who tells me the Culture Bus is “$7 cash, $3 with a FastPass, and, yes, it does take TransLink.”

Jim comments, saying the fare is $10. I call 311, again, and am told…say it with me: $7.

Jamison comments, mentioning the $10 thing, and I waspishly email him, saying “But why do people think it it 10 bucks? IT IS SEVEN!” He responds: The Muni web site says $10: http://www.sfmta.com/cms/mfares/fareinfo.htm#special

I call 311 AGAIN. And am told…$7. I send the 311 lady to the web address Jamison sent me. She says “They way they wrote it is confusing, but, no, it is $7. The Culture Bus is not a ‘special fare,’ that’s what’s $10.” I refer her to another page I found (without Jamison’s help!) that says “A single special event fare is charged for the day” in reference to the Culture Bus. She insists that the fare is $7.

Akit comments with a link to this photo THAT CLEARLY SAYS $10.

So, the Culture Bus has, quite possibly, been charging a $10 fare for six weeks, but no one responsible for Muni information seems to know about it.

I’m inclined to be all “Forget it, Jake, it’s Chinatown” about this but now I’m a little frustrated. Not at you commenters, who seem to be the only folks who know what’s up with Muni, but at a system where it seems like the left and right hands are more than a little uncoordinated.

So, we’re going to email MTA spokesperson Judson True a link to this piece and will let you know what he says.

Photo: Akit

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at eve@sfappeal.com.

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