New fareboxes and fare payment options coming soon

Northstar Link is preparing for installation of new fareboxes for all buses in its fleet. The modern fareboxes will bring new ways for passengers to pay their fare. Touchless pay options will be available using the new Metro Bus Smart Ride Card and mobile phone application known as the Smart Ride App. Cash fares and Smart Ride Tickets for short-term use will also be available across all services.

The current Northstar Link fareboxes are over 20 years old. The new fareboxes, Smart Ride Cards and Smart Ride App will modernize the way Central Minnesotans are able to pay their bus fares. More information is available at

The farebox transition will take place overnight on a weekend late in 2020. The date is yet to be determined. The date of the transition will be announced in the coming weeks. Service will not be interrupted for the transition.

We encourage customers to begin to use up their “old” fare media, including 31-Day Passes and 10-Ride Passes. The current passes will no longer be valid. Change cards will no longer be available or accepted after the transition.

Stay tuned to and follow Northstar Link on Facebook and Twitter for more updates regarding the fare payment changes.