On Campus

Student transit pass fraud costing Vancouver $15-million

TransLink threatens to axe program due to abuse

TransLink, Vancouver’s transit authority, is threatening to cancel its discount transit pass program for students because it loses as much as $15 million each year due to lost, stolen and illegally re-sold cards, reports The Vancouver Sun. All 80,000 students at five local schools, including the University of British Columbia, get “U-pass” cards mailed to them each year after paying $30 per month, which is collected when they pay their tuition. That’s far less than the $151-a-month that a regular pass costs. But some students don’t need the cards. That’s why there are currently 29 listings of passes for sale or wanted on Craigslist. Ken Hardie, spokesperson of TransLink, told The Sun that about 11 per cent of U-Passes are lost and replaced, five per cent go to students who register for school but who drop out after receiving the U-pass and another two per cent of cards disappear altogether after being sent to schools. TransLink is looking at ways to save the program. They say that those caught trying to use a card belonging to someone else will be charged $348.

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