CapMetro allows riders to get dropped off in-between stops at night

Morgan Severson, News Reporter

CapMetro’s new courtesy stop program allows riders to be dropped off in between stops closer after 9 p.m. in an effort to help riders feel more comfortable taking the bus at night.

The program, which is available on all MetroBus and MetroRapid routes, allows riders to request a stop in a safe area between the bus’ scheduled stops. CapMetro launched the courtesy stops as a pilot program in April and is now becoming a permanent facet for all riders. Before the program’s expansion, only riders with mobility impairments could ask for a courtesy stop. 

To ask for a stop, riders need to inform the bus driver they would like a courtesy stop and tell them where they would like to be dropped off upon entering the bus. They should also pull or press the stop request button or cord before reaching their destination. 

Unsafe courtesy stops may be declined at the discretion of the driver, according to CapMetro’s courtesy stop service alert. Courtesy stops must be in well-lit areas, said Blythe Nebeker, CapMetro strategic communication specialist. KUT reported stops must also be on streets under 50 miles per hour. 

“CapMetro’s mission is to provide safe, reliable transit to all our customers, including college students,” Nebeker said. 

Health and society senior Christie Opoku said she rides the bus two to three times per week to and from work and often gets home late at night. Opoku said she plans on using courtesy stops because she typically has to walk 12 minutes from the bus stop to home. 

“When I have to walk from West Mall to my house, I do feel a little bit more anxious than I would at 3 p.m., as opposed to 11 (p.m.) and getting off of work,” Opoku said. “You always think something’s going to happen just because it’s dark.”  

Biology junior Sruthi Ilangovan said she rides the bus every other day and frequently rides home at night. Ilangovan said she has yet to use a courtesy stop but thinks the option of having one makes her more comfortable riding the bus at night.

“Where I live is in between two stops and it’s kind of inconvenient to get down from a stop and walk all the way especially after it gets dark,” Ilangovan said. “Having a courtesy stop would make me feel safer.”