February schedule adjustments are standard at Big Blue Bus and Feb. 8 will bring the usual minor tweaks to schedules and routes; Route 3M will be extended farther south, to Pico and 4th Street, to provide better service near Santa Monica High School, Route 5 will include more downtown Santa Monica service to make better connections with other BBB service, and trip times on 7 other routes will be slightly adjusted. See details at www.bigbluebus.com/servicechanges.

While residents will not see big changes in BBB route structures, riders will see many improvements in customer service tools available to them. The biggest change is a new comprehensive system-wide schedule that BBB is calling “The Little Blue Book”. It includes all twenty BBB route schedules as well as a large foldout System Map. BBB has also launched a new homepage trip planner link using Google Transit which returns all transit information for the region, augmenting the display of trip options well beyond BBB’s service area. Providing this trip-planning option allows customers to evaluate transit options from BBB as well as other agencies so that they can determine for themselves the best option for their commute needs.

BBB is launching improvements to its digital media, fare media options and how customers can access information critical to their commute. Easy to print schedules and bus stop lists for individual routes are now available on BBB’s website. Starting in March, BBB will begin accepting TAP cards that allow the use of “stored value” fare payment and quick acceptance of EZ transit pass regional fare media.

Later in the summer BBB also expects to launch “Nextbus” service, which will provide customers bus locations and expected arrivals in real time. BBB Director Ed King said, “Customers have been asking for convenient access to reliable information for trip-planning purposes. We are listening and using their suggestions to improve our trip-planning tools to make it even easier to get around. I am proud that our Customer Service team is non-stop in searching for and implementing easy-to-use tools to enhance rider knowledge and rider experience.”

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