Downtown C-pass gives you free, unlimited access to COTA for work or play.

How to get your c-pass

Contact your employer's Human Resources to sign up. They'll create an account for you.

Use C-pass on any COTA route, any time, any day.


Questions? Contact Us

Additional Resources

App Download

Instructions to download the app and get going with your C-pass!

Cota service

Plan trips, find routes and schedules, and stay informed on service changes.

COTA Farebox Guide

Never ridden COTA before? Here's where you scan your C-pass.

Bike resources

CoGo bike share, bike kiosks, and other bike traveling tips.

c-pass credentials

C-pass users receive a special type of pass. Learn about your options.

Phone Transfer

Instructions to transfer your digital C-pass credential to a new device.

emergency ride home

Sign up in advance for free taxi rides in case of emergency. Learn more here.

commute calculator

Explore your commuting options (and savings) with Gohio Commute!


Frequently Asked Questions

Since District property owners pay for the Downtown C-pass, you must first work in an eligible property (Eligibility Map). Talk to your HR manager to get your Downtown C-pass. 

Nope! It’s totally free to you. Downtown property owners in the Capital Crossroads Special Improvement District with support from the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission are picking up the cost of unlimited access to the entire COTA bus system for people who work in their district.

The smartphone app works with both iPhone (7 and later) and Android devices. Unfortunately, it will not work with Windows phones at this time.

No. It offers unlimited access on all COTA routes any time, any day of the year. That includes all regular lines and special routes like the CMAX, AirConnect and Zoo Bus from downtown to the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium.

C-pass even covers bus fares for OSU football service from the Park & Rides at Ohio State Fairgrounds (must pay for parking) or Crosswoods (parking is free) to the Horseshoe on game day!

It also includes paratransit services if the rider meets disability requirements
(review requirements on COTA’s website here).

Yes! The pass costs you nothing, so why not? We’ve got lots of commuting resources to become more familiar with commuting options. And just because you get a pass, doesn’t mean you must use it every day. You can use it as much or as little as you want.

Yes. Numerous studies around the world suggest public transit is very safe if the common safety protocols are followed, such as wearing a mask, maintaining distance, and washing hands frequently. Learn more about how COTA is keeping riders safe. 

Yes, the C-pass requires a special credential, and you have several options. This sheet offers an overview of the different credential types. Your employer will work with you to select a C-pass credential.

You may only have one credential type (digital or physical) at a time, but you may switch anytime by talking to your HR department.

No. If you share your pass with someone, you will be disqualified from the program. This program is only valid for eligible employees in the district.

Gohio Commute offers Emergency Ride Home, which provides up to four free taxi rides per year for just these reasons. Create your account now to be prepared in case of emergency (Register Here). Make sure you check the box which reads “I would like to participate in the Guaranteed/Emergency Rise Home program” on the last step of registration.

Visit Gohio Commute for more information and a complete list of resources. or contact MORPC (the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission) with questions or to request a customized (and complimentary) commuting options consultation.

Your C-pass will be de-activated because the program is only available for eligible employees.

Downtown property owners in the Capital Crossroads Special Improvement District recognized the parking crunch was impeding Downtown development. Without a feasible or cost-effective parking solution, the owners turned to transit to help ease the parking woes. A 2015 study revealed transit ridership nearly doubled when employees were given access to a free transit pass. The same encouraging results were realized during the initial three-year program, so property owners extended the program through 2025. 

The program is currently funded through December 31, 2025.