New Year's Eve
Enjoy these New Year's Eve 2021 free rides on public transportation in 13 cities.

Score A Free Ride Home On NYE In These 13 Cities

Make sure you check the train schedule!

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New Year’s Eve is Friday, Dec. 31, but don’t be that friend that spends half the night checking your ride share apps to see if the prices went down. Whether you’re headed to a friend’s house or a small gathering, you might need a way to get home that doesn’t bust your budget for 2022. We rounded up 13 cities offering free train and bus rides on New Year’s Eve 2021, including Chicago, Seattle, and Los Angeles, so you can get home safe without breaking the bank.

Finding a ride home on New Year’s Eve can be so stressful (and expensive), but public transportation always has your back. This NYE weekend, residents of these 13 lucky cities can enjoy a ride home for the sweet price of $0. If you live in one of these cities, make sure to take advantage of the free rides while they last, and remember to plan your trips around service schedule changes. If you don’t see your city on the list, you can check with your local transit system if there are any free ride deals you can take advantage of on New Year’s Eve 2021.

As you plan for NYE, keep in mind the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) “recommends that everyone 5 years and older protect themselves from COVID-19 by getting fully vaccinated,” according to guidance as of Dec. 20 on the CDC website. The CDC also recommends a booster shot for people 18 and older as well as testing for COVID-19 before going to a gathering. Finally, if you do travel on NYE, check local and CDC guidelines for the most up-to-date information about mask usage on public transportation and tips on how to celebrate safely.

Austin

According to the Capital Metro website, the city of Austin is offering free rides on all services after 5 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.

For those who plan to take advantage of the freebie, know MetroRail service will be extended, but bus service will operate regularly. You can find schedule info here.

Chicago

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Chicagoans can enjoy a free ride home courtesy of the Free Rides Program from the Molson Coors company. According to the Chicago Transit Authority, the free rides will be offered on all CTA trains and buses from 10 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2021 to 4 a.m. Jan. 1, 2022. If you’re riding between these times, make sure not to tap your fare card, because you won’t be reimbursed.

Trains and buses will be running on a Sunday schedule on New Year’s Eve, so remember to plan your New Year’s travels accordingly.

Dallas

Dallas partygoers can also score a free ride home thanks to the Molson Coors company. According to DART.org, the Coors Light-sponsored rides will be free of charge for all DART riders from 6 p.m. on Dec. 31 through the end of service on DART paratransit, local buses, rail, and TRE commuter rail service between EBJ Union Station and CentrePort/DFW Airport Station.

Denver

Denver’s Regional Transportation District is another partner of Molson Coors, which means free bus and rail rides all night long. The safe service begins on Dec. 31 at 7 p.m. and runs until 7 a.m. New Year’s Day, Jan. 1, 2022.

If public transportation isn’t in your route home, there’s another way you can score a free ride home. According to Aceable.com, the Denver-based law firm known as Sawaya Law Firm will reimburse your single, one-way taxi rides up to $35. To receive a reimbursement check, 21+ riders just need to submit the taxi receipt and a copy of a valid ID to the Free Cab Ride Program.

Los Angeles

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It’s time to ditch the LA traffic for LA transit, because Los Angeles Metro trains will be free to riders on Dec. 31, 2021 from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2022. According to Metro.net, service will not extend past 2 a.m. like it has in past years.

Milwaukee

New Year’s Eve 2021 will be the 33rd year that Milwaukee residents can rely on the Molson Coors company for a free ride home. According to Ride Milwaukee County, rides on the Milwaukee Country Transit System will be free from 8 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 31, 2021 until 4 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 1, 2022.

Minneapolis/St. Paul

Another beneficiary of the Free Rides Program, the Twin Cities are also offering free rides on New Year’s Eve. According to the Mill City Times, the Miller Lite-sponsored rides will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 31, 2021.

Free service on The Lightrail will be available until Friday at 11:30 p.m., while bus lines will be cost-free until 3 a.m. on Saturday.

Portland

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Starting 8 p.m. on NYE, you won’t have to buy a ticket or tap your Hop card to use the any TriMet bus, MAX, or Portland Streetcar. Even transfers are free, according to the TriMet website.

Plus, MAX Blue, Green, Orange, and Yellow lines will also be offering extended service.

Reno

According to the RTC Washoe website, rides will be free for scheduled RTC services from 6 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2021, to 2 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2022.

San Diego

San Diego residents can thank Coca-Cola for their free ride home. According to the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System website, free bus and Trolley rides will begin after 6 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2021 and last until the end of service on New Year’s Eve.

The Trolleys will be following a Saturday schedule, so make sure you brush up on your train times here.

San Francisco

According to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco’s bus and metro system, known as Muni, will be offering free rides from 8 p.m. on NYE through 5 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2022.

Riders shouldn’t tag a Clipper card or activate a MuniMobile ticket during the free ride period.

Seattle

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Washington state residents living in or around the Seattle area have many free options to choose from. Here is the breakdown of all the free rides surrounding Seattle, per KingCounty.gov.:

King County Metro buses and DART will be fare-free from 4 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 31 through New Year’s Day, Saturday Jan. 1, 2022. Other Metro services like Via to Transit, Ride Pingo to Transit, Community Van, and Access service will also be free.

Sound Transit Express buses and Link Light Rail will also be free for riders between 4 a.m. Dec. 31, 2021, to 2 a.m. Jan. 1, 2022.

Pierce Transit buses and paratransit shuttles will be be offering free rides all day on New Year’s Eve, from the start of service at 6:30 a.m. until the end of service at 9:50 p.m.

Lastly, both Seattle Streetcars will be fare-free on New Year’s Eve during regular hours of operation (5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.).

Vancouver

If you’re planning on ringing in the new year in Vancouver, be sure to take advantage of the city’s free New Year’s Eve transit. Per the Translink website, riders can hop on the free rides anytime between 5 p.m. on Dec. 31 through 5 a.m. on New Year’s Day.

No matter what part of the country (or Canada) you’re spending New Year’s Eve in, you’re bound to find a free ride offer nearby.