TravelSmart: Taking the Bus

Perks of TravelSmart Busing

As a registered bus rider with the TravelSmart program, you have the following available to you:

  • A free bus pass that can be used to travel to and from the 42nd & Dewey campus for work or school purposes. Once you register for TravelSmart, the Parking Services Department will activate your UNMC, Nebraska Medicine, or Clarkson College identification badge, which you will use as a bus pass (you will not receive a separate bus pass). View the short video below to see how you can easily use your identification badge to access an Omaha Metro bus for free.
    • Please note if you obtain a new I.D.  badge, your bus access will automatically transfer, no need to re-register with TravelSmart.
    • If your status changes, e.g. student to employee, UNMC to Nebraska Medicine, etc. please re-register on the TravelSmart registration page.
  • Access to a free ride home (or to a doctor’s office, hospital, or a dependent’s school/daycare) when unforeseen emergencies occur on the days that you take the bus. Check out the Emergency Ride Home support program for additional details and guidelines.
  • If you currently have a parking permit, you have the option to keep it or cancel it. See the Details & Decision Point section below for more information.
  • If you decide to cancel your parking permit (and stop paying the monthly parking fee), you are also granted the following:
    • Opportunity to use daily-rate flexible parking ($3 per day) in marked sections of lots #6, #17, #21, #50, and #55 on the days that you drive a vehicle to campus. View the TravelSmart Daily-Rate Flexible Parking Map to see the locations of the daily-rate flexible parking lots.
    • 3-month grace period in which you can request your parking permit back for your original lot (see Details & Decision Point below for more info).
  • Parking Services and the Office of Sustainability are also working with Omaha Metro to fix or add benches and shelters to many of the bus stops around the 42nd & Dewey campus.

Wondering what you need to know before riding the bus?  This video will make riding the bus easy:

Watch this short video to see the benefits your colleagues discovered by riding the bus:

Additional Resources

Below are some helpful resources connected to riding the bus.

  • Park & Ride – Omaha Metro’s list of Park & Ride locations
  • Biking & Taking the Bus – Omaha Metro’s explanation of how to load your bike to the rack on the front of the bus
  • Bus Riding Tips – Omaha Metro’s guidelines and suggestions for how to ride the bus

Details & Decision Point: Keep or Cancel Your Parking Permit

As part of the TravelSmart registration process, you have the option to cancel or keep your parking permit (if you currently have one). Many TravelSmart participants prefer to cancel their current parking permit so they do not have to pay the parking fee.

If you choose to CANCEL your current parking permit:

  • Your current parking assignment will be saved for 3 months from the date of TravelSmart registration (i.e., risk-free trial period). If you decide you want your parking permit back within this 3-month grace period, a permit for your original lot will be reissued. If you request your parking permit back after 3 months, parking will be reassigned based on where space is available.
  • You will need to return your parking permit via interoffice mail or in person to Parking Services located in the UNMC Bookstore within the Student Life Center (campus zip 5001).
  • For employees, once the parking permit is returned to Parking Services, payroll deduction for the monthly parking fee is stopped. Students who return their parking permits will receive a prorated reimbursement for any upfront parking fee that was initially paid.
  • On the days you take the bus, you can use your current identification badge for a free bus ride, and you have access to Emergency Ride Home if needed.
  • As a registered TravelSmart participant, you have the opportunity to use daily-rate flexible parking located in marked sections of lots #36, #55, and #59 on the days that you need to drive your vehicle to campus. The cost is $3.00 for the day. Payment is provided when you arrive at the lot via a smartphone app or a cellphone that supports web browsers (or via a computer with access to the internet when you arrive to your workplace). Click here to learn more about daily-rate flexible parking and view a map of the specific lots.

If you choose to KEEP your parking permit:

  • You will continue paying the parking fee for your assigned parking lot.
  • On the days you take the bus to campus, you can use your identification badge for a free ride and you have access to Emergency Ride Home if needed.
  • Please note that you can cancel your parking permit at any point in the future; the 3-month grace period for saving your current lot assignment would start on the date you call.

As part of the registration process for the TravelSmart program, we encourage you to consider canceling your parking permit, but it may not be the most desirable option for you from a financial perspective. Generally speaking, if you plan to regularly ride the bus or use other active transportation more days per week than drive alone (e.g. 3 out of 5 days/week), it is financially advantageous to cancel your parking permit and pay for daily-rate flexible parking on the days you drive a vehicle to campus. However, if you plan to drive by yourself more days per week, it makes more financial sense to keep your parking permit and still use active transportation when you can.

If you are still uncertain about which option is best for you, please click on the TravelSmart Options Calculator, which will help you identify the option that makes the most sense financially. You can also contact  402.559.8580 x3 or travelsmart@unmc.edu for assistance.


Frequently Asked Questions about TravelSmart busing and other program details.

Return to the TravelSmart Homepage.