Rider Guidelines

Bikes and Shopping Carts on the Bus

How to Ride the Topeka Metro Fixed Route

All Topeka Metro fixed routes are open to the public.


Smoking, eating, drinking, and radios without headphones or earbuds are prohibited on the buses and inside Quincy Street Station. Guide and service animals are allowed in all Topeka Metro facilities and vehicles, but must be controlled by the owner and remain on the floor out of the aisle and doorways. Pets, emotional support animals, therapy animals, and comfort animals must be fully contained and remain secured inside an appropriate latched pet carrier. The passenger must maintain control of any animal they have with them or the animal will not be permitted to ride. A full list of passenger rules is available on the “About Metro” tab.


Topeka Metro offers limited "How to Ride" training for agencies and educational groups upon request by contacting Michelle Stottlemire at 785-730-8630.  Training is subject to staff availability.


Route Identification


Topeka Metro has 12 fixed routes. Each route is identified with a name, route number and unique color number. There are numbered destination signs on the front header of each bus, above the windshield, and on the curb side, near the front door. When possible, the route number matches the street that the bus travels on (example: #17 runs on West 17th Street). 


Locating a Bus Stop


Buses will stop only at designated stops along the route if there are passengers there waiting to board or passengers in the bus wanting to alight. For safety reasons, buses will not stop in active construction or road work areas to pick-up or drop-off passengers. All bus stops have a sign, and many have a shelter, bench or bike rack.


Getting On the Bus

  • Arrive at your bus stop five (5) minutes prior to the posted time. Too early is better than being late.
  • Wave to get the attention of the bus operator so he/she knows you want to board.
  • Stand back from the curb when the bus is approaching.
  • Always board the bus through the front door.
  • Alert the operator if you need to use the ramp to board the bus, or if you need the bus kneeled. Kneeling the bus lowers the height of the first step. Any passenger can use the ramp for safe boarding and alighting. The bus operator will assist passengers with using the ramp upon request. Please stand back when the ramp is being deployed.
  • Insert or swipe your pass, ride card, or cash fare into the fare box upon entry. If you pay with cash and do not use exact change, you will be issued a change card which works as a credit toward future rides on the fixed route.
  • If riding at a reduced rate, show your Topeka Metro Reduced Fare ID card to the bus operator when paying your fare. If you do not have a valid Topeka Metro Reduced Fare ID card, you will be expected to pay the full fare rate.
  • Take your seat immediately after paying your fare and remain seated at all times. The operator will not move the bus until all passengers are seated and secured. Passengers are only permitted to stand while the bus is in motion when all seats are occupied by other passengers. Service animals, pet carriers, personal carts, and packages must remain on the floor out of the aisle and doorways. 
  • If you are boarding at Quincy Street Station, please note that once the bus closes its doors and departs the staging area, the operator will not stop to board passengers who were not on time at the boarding location. You will have to wait for the next bus.
  • Operators will not stop to board passengers within 1-block of Quincy Street Station.
  • If you utilize a wheelchair or scooter, the operator is required to secure it prior to moving the bus.
  • Seats and wheelchair locations at the front of the bus are reserved for elderly and disabled passengers. Ambulatory passengers must move from seats located above the wheelchair securement area if a passenger in a wheelchair needs to be secured.
  • If you have a bicycle, it is your responsibility to secure the bicycle on the exterior rack. Each rack holds up to three (3) bicycles. Bicycles are not permitted inside the bus. Electric and gasoline-powered bicycles are prohibited both inside the bus and on the exterior rack.

Getting Off the Bus

  • To depart the bus, push the yellow strip or pull cord (located by the windows) approximately one-half (1/2) block before your desired stop. This gives the operator the ability to safely slow down for the stop.
  • Each vehicle is equipped with an automated announcement that calls out the stops.
  • Remain seated and wait until the bus comes to a complete stop before attempting to exit. Make sure you take any packages you may have with you.
  • If you utilize a wheelchair or scooter, please do not remove the securements before the bus is stopped. The operator will assist with removing the securements.
  • Whenever possible, exit the bus by using the rear door allowing passengers to board through the front door.  However, passengers needing to use the ramp will need to exit through the front entrance.
  • If you have a bicycle on the rack, do not forget to remove it.
  • After you exit, stand to the side of the road or on the sidewalk until the bus has safely pulled away.
  • NEVER cross the street in front of the bus.

Tips for Riders

  • Arrive at the bus stop early. Too early is better than being late and missing the bus.
  • Be patient. A bus is considered on time up to five (5) minutes after the posted time.
  • Passengers who unsafely cross traffic to get to the bus stop may not be permitted to board the bus.
  • You must be at a designated stop when the bus arrives, or it may pass you by.
  • If the bus stop has a shelter, step out of the shelter or wave as the bus approaches so the operator can see you.
  • Smoking is not permitted in the bus,at Quincy Street Station or the bus shelters.
  • Do not leave trash at bus stops. Many stops have a trash can provided for your convenience.
  • Have your pass, ride card, reduced fare ID card, or cash fare ready before the bus arrives.
  • Always remain behind the Standee Line and seated when seats are available.
  • Seats are for passengers. Please do not stow purses, bags, packages or animals in the seats.
  • Bus operators are good resources and are willing to help. If you are confused or need assistance, please ask when the bus is not in motion.
  • Do not engage the operator in personal conversation that will take their concentration off safely operating the bus.
  • Businesses located near bus stops may not provide restrooms, change, or phone services to transit patrons.
  • Service materials are available in accessible formats, such as large print or Braille, upon request at Quincy Street Station.
  • Topeka Metro will make reasonable service modifications to its policies, practices, or procedures when necessary to provide equal access to all services for persons with disabilities.
  • Passengers may request reasonable service modifications by contacting Lead Operations Supervisor Al Bradley at 785-730-8651 or abradley@topekametro.org, writing to info@topekametro.org, by speaking with a customer service specialist at Quincy Street Station, or by asking the bus operator. 


    For USD 501 students who ride the Topeka Metro bus to school: Click on the video below.