RIDEpass (Graduate Students)

The RIDEpass mass transit program provides access to all CATABUS routes to eligible University Park graduate students for only $21 per month. Transportation Services covers the remaining cost of each graduate student mass transit pass to encourage the use of mass transit, reduce vehicle congestion on campus, and promote sustainable transportation.


2022/2023 RIDEpass Terms and Conditions

  • Must be enrolled in the current semester as a graduate, law, or medical student, with University Park as the primary campus of enrollment
  • Must live off campus at a residence that does not already participate in a CATABUS program
  • Must live more than 0.75 miles (walking distance) from a CATA campus service Blue Loop or Red Link stop to be eligible for the RIDEpass program. (Not sure if your address qualifies? Try using our distance webtool here).
  • Must live within the CATA community service area
  • May not have a core daytime-access Penn State parking permit (or must return this permit when purchasing the RIDEpass mass transit pass).
  • Graduate student mass transit passes are valid at any time on all regular CATABUS and CATAGO routes.
  • Passes are not transferable and may be used only for the transportation of the individual to whom the pass is issued.
  • Passes are the property of Penn State Transportation Services and must be returned upon termination of enrollment or eligibility or upon request by Penn State Transportation Services or CATA.
  • Graduate student mass transit passes are not valid on any other CATA service, including CENTRE RIDE, the Football Shuttle, Charters, or any special shuttle services, whether open to the public or not.
  • Participants must pay a $25 non-refundable processing fee for all lost or stolen passes, regardless of whether a replacement is issued.
  • All participants MUST bring their Penn State ID card and a document verifying the address used to apply for the program. You will not be issued a pass without these documents. Acceptable documents for address verification include a valid driver’s license or learner’s permit, valid state identification card, current lease/rental agreement, property tax receipt, recent utility bill, recent paycheck, recent change of address mailer from the Postal Service, and recent credit card or bank account statement. All “recent” documents must be dated within four weeks of pick-up.
  • Full-year 2022-2023 RIDEpass permits will expire May 31, 2023. Fall semester RIDEpass permits expire December 31, 2022.


Online registration for the 2022-2023 RIDEpass program is now available.

Upon successful completion of the application, participants will receive a confirmation email with details regarding when passes will be available for pickup at the Transportation Services Office.

With no cap on the number of program participants, interested faculty, staff, and graduate students may apply at any time throughout the 2022-2023 program year.


Graduate students participating in the RIDEpass program are required to pay for their pass, in full, at the time of pass pick-up by check or money order (made payable to “The Pennsylvania State University”), major credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express), or LionCash+. The amount due is calculated based on the months remaining in the program from the month the student picks up their pass.

Full-year RIDEpass passes will be valid from the date of receipt through the end of the 2022-2023 program cycle, which will end May 31, 2023. Fall semester passes are valid from the date of receipt through December 31, 2022. While participants may exit the program early and receive a prorated refund for unused months remaining on the pass, participants who choose to exit the program before the pass expiration date will not be eligible to re-enter the program until the start of the next program year. Users found in violation of program rules are not entitled to this prorated refund.


The Evening/Weekend parking permit previously available to RIDEpass holders will be discontinued effective July 1, 2022. As a result of this change, all RIDEpass participants will be eligible to purchase a Commuter permit. Graduate students can purchase their Commuter permit online.

For more information, call the Transportation Services Office at 865-1436 or email [email protected].