Paratransit is on-call transit service for individuals whose disabilities prevent them from riding traditional fixed-route bus services all or some of the time. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires all public transit systems that provide fixed-route bus and rail services to also provide paratransit services.
Once a rider is determined to be eligible for service through an application process, they can schedule rides at least one day in advance. Personal care attendants may accompany passengers free of charge if their eligibility determination states that they need one. An escort or guest may accompany a passenger and ride at the same fare as the passenger, provided that the attendant, escort, or guest is picked up and dropped off at the same point as the passenger, and there is space available.
Contra Costa County has several paratransit providers: LINK, WestCAT Paratransit, Tri Delta Transit Paratransit and East Bay Paratransit. Learn more about these and other accessible transportation services with the Way To Go Contra Costa Transportation Resource Guide.
Accessible Transportation Strategic Plan
If you’re an older adult, have a disability, or are a veteran, transportation in Contra Costa County can be challenging. Contra Costa Transit Authority is working to identify ways to make it easier for you to get around the county—whether you’re going to an appointment, getting groceries, visiting family, or anything else. Learn more about the Accessible Transportation Strategic (ATS) plan.
Free Paratransit Rides
Tri Delta Transit: East County Ticket Program: ADA paratransit riders using Tri Delta Transit services may be eligible for free paratransit rides through Tri Delta Transit’s East County Ticket Program. Households eligible for assistance programs should call the Tri Delta Transit Means Based Fare Program at 925-706-4399 to see if they qualify.
WestCAT: Low Income Fare Equity Program (LIFE): Paratransit riders using WestCAT may be eligible for free rides through this program. Eligible riders will receive 10 one-way trip tickets, valued at $30.00, per month to use for local or regional WestCAT Paratransit trips. Applicants must call 510-724-3331 ext.113 to apply for the program. To qualify, individuals must be currently certified as eligible for ADA Paratransit with WestCAT Paratransit or Dial-A-Ride.
Travel Across Multiple Service Areas Without Transferring
One-Seat Regional Ride Program: County Connection is piloting a One-Seat Regional Ride Program which aims to eliminate required transfers for trips that cross multiple transit service areas. As a result, paratransit passengers can have one seat for the entire duration of their trip. The agencies participating in the pilot are County Connection, Tri Delta Transit, WestCAT, and Wheels Bus. To use this service, call (925) 680-2134 to book a trip.
County Connection LINK serves Pleasant Hill, Walnut Creek, Concord, Lafayette and other central Contra Costa cities. Once you have completed the ADA paratransit application, and been found eligible for service, you can get a one-way ride door-to-door for $5, as long as the start and end of the trip are within 1.5 miles of a bus stop or train station.
To arrange a ride, you may call up to seven days in advance, but at least one day before your ride is needed, between the hours of 8am and 5pm, seven days a week and holidays. The bus will arrive within 15 minutes of your scheduled time.
Click here for more information about LINK service, or call 925-680-2066 to begin the application process.
County Connection also offers a “How to Ride the Bus” training for individuals who would like assistance with planning or actually taking a fixed-route bus trip. Call 925-680-2066 to get started.
Paratransit supplements the traditional fixed-route WestCAT bus service in Pinole, Hercules and unincorporated areas of west Contra Costa County, and is for people who are ADA certified and meet specific guidelines.
You have to apply in advance to use the service. Once you are determined eligible, you can call to arrange a ride one to three days in advance and a bus will come pick you up. Reservations are taken seven days a week from 8am to 5pm. Paratransit rides are shared rides, so you may be sharing the bus with other passengers. Fares are $1.25 one-way for local rides and $3 for regional rides.
To sign up for WestCAT paratransit, call 510-724-6320 to have the application mailed to you, or visit the WestCAT website.
Tri Delta Transit Paratransit
Tri Delta Transit Paratransit serves Bay Point, Pittsburg, Antioch and other east Contra Costa areas. Once you have completed the application process, and been found eligible for service, you can get a one-way ride door-to-door for as little as $2.75 if you are riding within the Tri Delta Transit service area. Income-qualified riders may be eligible for free ride tickets. Ride reservations are accepted one to three days in advance and can be scheduled 6am to 6pm all days.
East Bay Paratransit
East Bay Paratransit offers accessible service in the AC Transit service area, so it’s among the largest Paratransit services in the East Bay. Like any other paratransit system, you have to apply for eligibility and schedule your ride in advance.
East Bay Paratransit can pick you up and deliver you anywhere within 3/4 mile of an AC Transit bus stop or BART station. You can even get a ride from East Bay Paratransit into San Francisco.
To use East Bay Paratransit, you must apply through the Eligibility Certification Department and be found eligible for the service. The process includes both a paper application and an in-person interview. Only people who have a disability or a health condition that prevents them from using buses or BART trains are eligible to use the service. You can download the application here or call 510-287-5000 to set up your interview.
Travel on East Bay Paratransit is by advance reservation only. No same-day reservations are accepted. Reservations are made on the phone to the East Bay Paratransit Customer Service Center. Reservation calls are accepted from 8am to 5pm. every day. You can make a reservation as early as seven days in advance.
The cost depends on how far you’re going. Shorter trips can be as little as $4. Longer trips can cost $6 or $7. The operator will confirm the price with you when you make the reservation.
For more information, visit the East Bay Paratransit website or call 510-287-5000.