Customer Policies

Our customer policies came into effect in 2006 with the formation of Durham Region Transit (DRT). We have updated these policies to ensure that clarity is provided to customers, reflect advancements in technology and the modernization of our service delivery model. The policy updates are consistent with neighbouring transit agencies and furthermore promote the health and safety of customers.

Passenger Code of Conduct

Respectful behaviour is expected of all customers and DRT employees. Acts of aggression, intimidation, or harassment will not be tolerated. Those who act in such a manner will be asked to leave DRT property, including vehicles. All interaction between customers and DRT employees are subject to an escalation process:

  • Level 1: Verbal reminder to customer that behaviour is unacceptable.
  • Level 2: Cease and Desist letter outlining customer expectation, that their behaviour is unacceptable, all correspondence to be in writing, last chance prior to suspension of service.
  • Level 3: Suspension of On Demand account for 30 days. Should unacceptable behaviour continue once account is re-instated, account will be further suspended for an additional 60 days.

All passengers should be mindful and aware that people with disabilities may be travelling on DRT services. This includes both visible and invisible disabilities. When travelling, all persons shall:

  • Allow passengers using wheelchairs or other mobility devices to board the bus first and exit the bus last. This is referred to as the “First On, Last Off Policy.”
  • Vacate a seat in the priority seating area of the bus for a passenger with a disability, visible and invisible.
  • Passengers must vacate the seat for a person with disabilities when requested from a Transit Operator or any other DRT identified employee.

All persons on or about any property owned, leased, occupied or used by DRT, including vehicles, transit stops and shelters, shall at all times:

  • Pay a full and valid fare when boarding the DRT vehicle.
  • Provide proof of payment if requested.
  • Wear shoes, boots, sandals or other similar footwear.
  • Be fully clothed.
  • Remain behind the yellow line on the floor while the bus is in service, except for boarding.
  • Use earphones when operating any radio, recording device, digital music, or audio device, musical instrument or similar device, and ensure that the sound level does not disturb other passengers or DRT employees.
  • Carry all litter off DRT property, and dispose appropriately.
  • Not place feet or shoes on seats, or laying down on seats.
  • Not smoke, or carry a lighted cigar, cigarette, pipe, other tobacco product, or any other lighted smoking equipment or material.
  • Not consume alcohol.
  • Not cause a disturbance with profanity, gestures, fighting, or being offensive.
  • Not conduct themselves in a manner that creates public indecency.
  • Not interfere with or obstruct a DRT employee or contractor from performing their duties.
  • Not use profane, abusive, indecent, foul, insulting or obscene language or behaviours.
  • Not urinate, expectorate or defecate, except in designated facilities.
  • Not loiter on DRT property or transit stop, or in vehicles or a stop shelter.
  • Use DRT property, vehicle, transit stop or shelter, solely for it’s intended purpose or use.
  • Not store, keep or accumulate for future use, objects, on DRT property or transit stop, or in vehicles or a stop shelter, unless otherwise authorized by DRT.

No person shall enter any property owned, leased, occupied, or used by DRT, including vehicles and buses, being in possession of:

  • A firearm, air gun, air rifle, pellet gun, pellet rifle, gas charged gun, gas charged rifle, imitation firearm, an offensive weapon or a prohibited weapon; or
  • Explosives, pyrotechnical material, flammable material, offensive or toxic material, or any other dangerous thing, object, or material.

Passengers who are in possession of a knife must always ensure it is safely secured while travelling on a DRT vehicle in the following manner:

  • The blade of the knife must be in a sheath.
  • The knife must be secured by the passenger; and
  • At no time under any circumstances shall the blade of the knife be exposed while travelling on a DRT vehicle.

Passengers are permitted to take photos and/or record videos for personal use, however, may not be posted on social media, or publicly distributed in any way.

  • While taking photos and/or recording videos, the passenger is prohibited from interfering with the safe operation of a vehicle, flow of pedestrians, or any DRT employee during the course of their work.
  • Individuals and organizations taking photos and/or recording videos for commercial use involving DRT staff, vehicles or property must receive prior written authorization from DRT.
  • Photography, filming, or video recording of DRT staff during the normal course of their duties is strongly discouraged.

Parents and/or guardians are solely responsible for ensuring their children can independently use the transit system before permitting their child, aged 16 or younger, to travel unattended when using DRT services.

If you see something, say something.

  • If a customer or passenger observes a suspicious package that is left on the bus, at a stop, in a shelter, or at a facility, please notify a DRT staff member immediately. Do not attempt to open or handle a suspicious package and discourage others around you from going near or handling the package.
  • If a customer or passenger encounters anything or anyone suspicious, notify a DRT staff member immediately.
Fares and Transfers

All customers traveling or attempting to travel on the transit system will pay the appropriate and valid fare:

a) Where the amount of the fare charged is disputed, the customer shall pay the amount requested, request a transfer, and communicated with DRT Customer service;

b) A customer who refuses to pay the amount of fare requested by a proper authority shall be refused passage Transfers

  • Upon paying a fare, all customers receive unlimited travel for two-hours.
  • Transfers are automatically calculated when using PRESTO fare payment system. When using a PRESTO payment solution, a transfer will be automatically applied to the PRESTO payment solution.
  • Customers who pay a cash fare must request for a paper transfer from the operator.
  • Once your transfer expires, a new fare must be paid when boarding. All transfers must be in good condition with printed information remaining readable.

GO Transit Transfers and Connections

  • Customers connecting to or from GO Transit benefit from the fare integration program and are not charged a DRT fare for those trips. PRESTO will automatically calculate a free fare upon tapping. Cash fares will need to show a valid GO Transit Single Ride Ticket or Day Pass to the operator when boarding DRT, no transfer is issued.
  • For assistance in planning your trip, consult or contact DRT customer service at 1-866-247-0055.

DRT operates a fleet of different vehicle types. In order to maintain the safety of our customers and operators, vehicles with bike racks are the only vehicles that can accommodate bicycles.

On Demand vehicles cannot accommodate bicycles at this time. Only buses used in scheduled service are equipped with bike racks.

  • Scheduled service buses are equipped with a bike rack at the front of the bus, which can fit two (2) bicycles on a first-come, first-serve basis.
  • Power assisted bicycles are allowed on the bike racks if they meet the following size requirements:
    • Tire size minimum 16-inch, maximum 29 inch (700c).
    • Maximum weight of 55 lbs (25 kg).
    • Powered bikes must be electric, or battery powered, no gasoline or combustible fuels are allowed.
  • Customers are responsible for loading and unloading their bike from the bike racks. Operators will not assist.
  • All loose items on bikes must be removed before loading onto the bike rack. This may include water bottles, saddlebags, carriers or any other object that isn’t secured to the bike.

Bicycles are not permitted on board any DRT vehicles.

Strollers, shopping carts, play buggies and wagons
  • Strollers can be wheeled onto the bus. Customers may ask the operator to deploy the ramp.
  • Stroller brakes need to be applied while the bus is in motion.
  • If there is not enough space on a bus to accommodate a passenger with a stroller, the customer is required to wait for the next bus.
  • Small shopping carts (bundle buggies) must be secured at all times by the customer.
  • Play buggies or foldable wagons are allowed on DRT vehicles as long as they remain folded while on board.
  • All items brought on board must be safely managed by the customer, kept clear of the aisles and doorways and must not create any safety concerns. Operators will not assist.
Travelling with Pets and Service Animals

Dogs, cats, and all other household pets are allowed to travel on DRT vehicles, provided the following conditions are met:

  • Pet is on a leash or is transported inside an enclosed, secure pet carrier or other suitable device.
  • Does not create a disturbance or inconvenience to others.
  • Pet containers, carriers and strollers must be kept clear of the aisle and doorways and must not create any safety concerns.
  • Customers are required to be always in care and control of any animal.
  • A pet stroller which fully secures the animal inside the device is acceptable.

Service Animals are defined as an animal that has received specific training to assist or support a person with a disability. Service Animals are allowed by law, under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).

Customers with disabilities who are travelling with a Service Animal may be requested to provide documentation of:

  • The animal's completion of a training program.
  • Letter of verification from a licensed healthcare provider stating that the animal is required due to the presence of a disability.
Carry-on Items

Customers are allowed to travel on DRT with carry-on items if the customer can:

  • Independently manage their items, operators are not allowed to assist with carry-on items.
  • Keep aisles and doorways of the vehicle free and clear from any items.
  • Make sure that their items do not create a safety risk.
  • The following carry-on items need to be carried by the customer and not used while on board the vehicle:
  • Ice skates, roller blades, kick scooters, skateboards and other similar devices.
    • Ice skates need to have skate guards on the blades.
    • Foldable kick scooters need to remain folded.
    • Skis and snowboards need to be in a case and remain upright.

Customers travelling with any large bulky items on On Demand need to inform DRT of their carry-on items at the time of booking. DRT will not store carry-on items in the trunk of On Demand vehicles and items must be manageable by the passenger.

DRT vehicles do not have luggage or storage areas. The operator has the right to refuse any carry-on items if they are concerned about the item interfering with the safety of the vehicle or customers.

Travelling with Mobility Devices

DRT accommodates the following mobility aids and assistive devices:

  • Manual wheelchairs and power wheelchairs.
  • 3-wheel and 4-wheel scooters or kneeling scooters.
  • Wheeled walkers, pediatric walkers, standers
  • Canes, crutches and braces.
  • Power add-ons (devices added to a manual wheelchair if you do not need a power wheelchair)
  • Positioning devices (cushions, back and head supports, power tilt and recline)

All mobility aids and assistive devices must meet Highway Traffic Act (R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 629: ACCESSIBLE VEHICLES) standards, and must be:

  • No larger than 30 inches wide (78.74 cm).
  • No larger than 48 inches long (123 cm).
  • No heavier than a combined weight of 600lbs (device and customer).
  • Battery operated only; gas powered devices are not permitted.
  • Kept in clean, good working condition.

If you are travelling with a mobility aid or assistive device on scheduled service, all buses have:

  • Front door access ramp.
  • “Kneel” feature to lower the bus to curb level for easier boarding.
  • A minimum of two designated mobility aid securement areas.
  • Priority seating at the front of the bus for passengers with disabilities.

If you are travelling with a mobility aid or assistive device on On Demand, you must notify DRT of the device when booking your trip. If your device is not on the approved list above, please contact DRT Customer Service to determine if your device can be accommodated.

Devices that are not allowed on-board DRT vehicles include: bikes, e-bikes, extra-large devices, Segway’s, and any other device that does not meet the above requirements, devices that cannot be safely secured using DRT securement systems or devices that interfere with the safety of DRT operations.

Travelling with Infants & Children

Under the Highway Traffic Act, infants & children are those who are either of: younger than 8 years of age, weigh less than 36 kilograms (80 lb), or measure less than 145 cm (4ft 9in) in height.

When travelling with infants & children on scheduled service:

  • It is recommended that the infant be removed from the stroller and held in the arms of the parent or guardian.
  • Children who can independently sit upright, should occupy their own seat.
  • Customers may choose to have the infant/child remain in the stroller during travel. If so, customers are asked to make sure the stroller isn’t blocking an aisle or doorway and apply the stroller brakes.
  • Operators will “kneel” the bus and/or deploy the ramp upon request to help customers using strollers to get on and off the bus.

When travelling with infants & children on On Demand:

  • Customer travelling with infants & children younger than 8 years of age, weigh less than 36 kilograms (80 lb), or measure less than 145 cm (4ft 9in) in height, must contact a booking agent at 1-866-247-0055.


Policies Specific to On Demand

 Travelling with On Demand (and Specialized Transit)

On Demand service is offered to the public and delivered using smaller vehicles that are booked by the customer. On Demand helps customers connect to DRT scheduled service, or to areas within Durham Region where scheduled service is not available.

How it works:

  • On Demand is a service delivery model that operates without a fixed schedule and route.
  • Any customer can book an On Demand trip to travel where scheduled service is not available to connect to a nearby transit route.
  • Trips are booked using mobile applications (such as “Transit” and “DRT On Demand”) or by contacting a booking agent at 1-866-247-0055.
  • On Demand is a shared ride service, you may be on the vehicle with other customers or stop along the way for pick-ups/drop-offs.
  • Some customers travelling on On Demand may be customers with disabilities who require additional assistance from the operator.

The operator of a On Demand trip will:

  • Pick up the customer at the designated pick-up location (this may be curbside bus stop, or address).
  • Ask for a fare payment.
  • Issue transfers on request (see Fares and Transfers policy)
  • Provide securement for customers using wheelchairs or assistive devices.

The operator of a On Demand trip will not:

  • Make unscheduled stops.
  • Drop the customer off at a different location than what was requested at time of booking.
  • Provide additional assistance such as carrying groceries or luggage.

Customer expectations for On Demand trips:

  • Follow the cancellation and no-show policy to avoid wasting a trip.
  • Be able to travel on the vehicle with other customers.
  • Understand that it is not a direct ride, other pick-ups/drop-offs may occur.
  • Recognize that some customers travelling with you may have a disability and require additional assistance from the operator.
  • Use seatbelts on board DRT vehicles when available.
  • Be ready and waiting at the bus stop or curb prior to scheduled pick-up time

Specialized Transit trips are booked by the customer and delivered according to the customers’ needs and abilities. The trip may be delivered through a combination of On Demand and scheduled services consistent with the customers eligibility.

The operator of a specialized service trip will:

  • Notify the customer of their arrival at a location by:
    • Ringing the doorbell/knocking on the door at a house, or
    • Entering through the first set of doors of an apartment building, condo, or public facility and verbally announcing their arrival, or
  • When completing an integrated trip, assist the customer to/from the scheduled bus stop concrete pad. The operator of the scheduled service bus will deploy the ramp to assist with boarding/exiting of the bus and will secure the mobility device upon request.
  • Customers are asked to apply the brakes of their mobility device regardless of whether or not it has been secured.
  • Provide light assistance, such as walking with the customer to and from the vehicle and open doors to public buildings.
  • Verbally assist the customer with positioning their mobility device to safely navigate the vehicle ramp.
  • Provide securement for mobility devices.

The operator of a specialized service trip will NOT:

  • Go into a location further than the first set of doors.
  • Open/close/lock/unlock doors at the customer's home or enter the home for any reason.
  • Wait for someone to receive the customer during drop offs.
  • Wait for the scheduled bus to arrive during an integrated trip.
  • Carry the customer’s items, such as grocery bags.
  • Provide care or supervision similar to that of a support person.
  • Provide assistance that may affect their health and safety, such as any heavy lifting/pushing/pulling, or ramps, walkways or other factors are a risk to health and safety of the operator.
  • Wait for a location to open for business if the customer arrives early.

A customer using specialized transit is expected to:

  • Be able to travel safely independently or with a support person.
  • Board and exit a scheduled service bus without assistance, or with the aid of a support person.
  • Be ready and waiting at the door prior to scheduled pick-up time.
  • Use seatbelts on board DRT vehicles when available.
  • Have the ability to ride on a vehicle for up to two (2) hours.
  • Have the ability to travel with other passengers on board the same vehicle.
  • Cancel their trips with at least four (4) hours’ notice so that the trip can be offered to another customer.
  • Ensure a clear, accessible, and safepath at their pick-up and drop off locations, even in the winter months.

Locations for Specialized service pick up/drop off must meet the following criteria:

  • Residents and/or property managers shall ensure their properties are safe and secure and do not compromise the safety of DRT staff during the conduct of their duties.
  • All pathways, sidewalks, ramps, and other surfaces between the appliable vehicle parking location and the accessible entrance shall be clear of snow, ice and any other obstacles or debris prior to customer pick-up or drop off.
  • At locations where a ramp or elevator is not provided, and where customers use an electric mobility device, there shall be no steps between the appliable vehicle parking location and the accessible entrance.
  • At locations where a ramp or elevator is not provided and where customers use a manual mobility device, there shall be no more than one (1) step between landings of no more than seven (7) inches between the appliable vehicle parking location and the accessible entrance.
 Eligibility for Specialized Transit

A customer may be eligible for specialized transit if a disability prevents them from using conventional buses for all or part of a trip. Disabilities may be short-term or long-term, and may include physical, cognitive, sensory, or mental health conditions. Having a disability alone does not automatically result in eligibility. Eligibility is based on the functional ability to use scheduled service.

Eligibility is assessed on an individual, case-by-case basis, it is not based on:

  • Disability type
  • Income level
  • Age
  • Availability of conventional transit in customer’s area
  • Solely the recommendation of a healthcare provider
  • Convenience, reluctance or unwillingness to travel on scheduled service
  • Finding conventional transit more difficult to use
  • Requiring attendant care during travel

Eligibility categories:

The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) requires transportation providers to have three (3) categories of eligibility. Through the application process DRT will determine which category matches the functional abilities of a customer.

  1. Unconditional Eligibility: A person with a disability that prevents them from using scheduled service.
  2. Conditional Eligibility: A person with a disability where environmental or physical barriers limit their ability to consistently use scheduled service.
  3. Temporary Eligibility: A person with a temporary disability that prevents them from using scheduled service.

Mandatory Support Persons may be required if the customer does not have the ability to use travel safely and independently.

Appealing Eligibility Decisions

DRT provides customers with a mechanism to appeal the eligibility decision should there be a disagreement. The decision can be reviewed upon request. Appeal forms and processes can be found at Registration and forms - Durham Region Transit

 Cancellation & No-Show Policy

Customers who are booking On Demand or Specialized Transit trips are required to provide reasonable notice when cancelling their trip. This allows DRT to offer the trip to another customer. Trips that are cancelled or result in a no-show, are a wasted resource that negatively impacts DRT’s ability to provide affordable and available public transportation.


  • Any trips that are cancelled with less than eight (8) hours’ notice from the scheduled pick-up time. This includes trips that are booked, confirmed and immediately cancelled, if booked within 8 hours of travel.


  • Any trips where the customer is not at the scheduled pick-up location when the DRT vehicle is scheduled to arrive. If a customer is accommodated on another vehicle, or an error in pick up occurs, it is the customer’s responsibility to advise DRT Customer Service accordingly to avoid incurring points. Customers booking multiple trips throughout the day without the intention of travelling are also considered no-shows.

DRT uses a point system to track no-shows and late-cancellations. Points stay on a customer file for one year. Customers are given the following points for no-shows and late-cancellations:

  • Cancellation = one (1) point per one way trip
  • No-show = two (2) points per one way trip

For round-trip bookings, if a customer cancels or is a no-show the outgoing trip, the return trip will be automatically canceled.

Once a customer accumulates 6 points within a 12-month period, the following applies.

Actions for On Demand or Specialized Service Trips

  • 6 points
    • Formal letter documenting late cancellations and/or no shows
  • 12 points
    • Unable to use for two days
  • 18 points
    • Unable to use for seven days
  • 24 points
    • Unable to use service for 30 days and interview with DRT manager to review service needs
  • 30 points
    •  Unable to use service for 60 days and interview with DRT manager to review service needs
  • 36 points
    • Unable to use service for 90 days and interview with DRT manager to review service need                                 
 Support Persons

Customers with disabilities may need help with travelling on DRT. A Support Person is someone who assists the customer with communication, mobility, personal care or medical needs or with access to goods, services or facilities.

Support Persons:

  • Are limited to support one customer per vehicle.
  • Are provided by the customer.
  • Can be any adult (person aged 18 or older) that can meet the needs of the customer, including family or friends.
  • Are not required to pay a fare when travelling with the customer if they have a valid Support Person Assistance Card.
  • The customer is required to pay a fare.
  • Support Person Assistance Cards are accepted by neighboring transit agencies including TTC, YRT and GO Transit.

Customers travelling on On Demand:

This includes documented and verified risk of:

  • Causing disruption or harm to self or others.
  • Risk of wandering if left on a vehicle alone.
  • Medical or personal care requirements during travel.

If a Mandatory Support Person is required, the customer is not able to travel alone.

Contact Us

For any questions related to the customer guidelines, please contact Durham Region Transit Customer Service at 1-866-247-0055 or fill out a customer comment form