Below are some common questions about CATS service. Should you need immediate assistance from the CATS Team during operating hours, please call our Customer Care Line at 225-389-8282.
- About CATS
- How to Ride
- Getting in Touch with CATS
- Services for People with Disabilities
- Charter Requests
What is CATS?
CATS is the Capital Area Transit System, which provides bus service to residents of and visitors to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. CATS operates 29 bus lines, helping people get to the places where they live, work and play.
How is CATS governed?
CATS is governed by a nine-member Board of Commissioners, which meets monthly to handle the business of the agency. The CATS Board hires a CEO to manage the day-to-day functions of the agency and implement its strategic vision for the system.
Is CATS run by the City of Baton Rouge?
No. CATS is an independent agency from City-Parish government, funded by a combination of a local millage, self-generated funding and state and federal transportation dollars. The Baton Rouge Metro Council appoints the nine members of the CATS Board of Commissioners.
When does the CATS board meet?
The CATS Board of Commissioners meets at 4:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month in BREC’s Commission Room, which is located at 6201 Florida Blvd. in Baton Rouge. Meetings also are streamed online here.
How much does it cost to ride?
Below is a breakdown of CATS current fares for all routes, except the 16 Capitol Park Shuttle, which is free for all riders:
- Adults: $1.75
- Children younger than 5: Free with paying adult.
- Children younger than 12 must be accompanied by an adult.
- Senior citizens (ages 62 and older) and people with disabilities who show a CATS ID card: $.35
- Students with valid Student ID Card: $.35
(School Request for bulk Student ID Cards can be submitted to email@example.com)
- Medicare Discount: Medicare cardholders can ride CATS buses (fixed route) for 35 cents. Medicare card holders may present their Medicare card with a valid state issued identification, or apply with CATS to receive a CATS ID card.
Please note: If exact fare is not paid, "change" will be in the form of a "change card" which can be used for fare on future rides.
Where do I buy a pass?
Starting August 15, 2022, CATS riders will have two contactless pay options: new reloadable CATS x UMO pass cards, or a smartphone app.
CATS riders can download the Umo app by searching for "Umo Mobility" in the iOS or Android app store. Riders can then set up their account, purchase passes, or add a balance to their account using a credit or debit card. The UMO app also has functions to help riders track their bus and plan trips.
Riders who would prefer a reloadable pass card can receive their CATS x UMO pass cards at the CATS Terminal. Riders can then load their pass cards and buy passes online at UmoPass.com, or they can visit participating local vendors to load their pass cards in person. See list of vendors here.
Riders have a two (2) hour window to use a bus transfer one (1) time. Transfers that are marked as EXPIRED will notbe accepted. Once transfers are expired, fullprice fare must be paid. Transfers will not be issued to passengers
boarding with passes.
How do I pay when I board?
Thanks to the CATSxUMO system, paying for your fare has never been easier. Just say Hello, Tap, and Go! Users with a physical CATSxUMO card tap the card on the reader to pay. When using a smart phone, simply open the "Wallet" tab on your UMO Mobility app, and the reader will scan the QR code for payment.
If you prefer to pay cash, or have a paper pass, look for the farebox located by the bus operator. It accepts passes, bills and coins (exact change only please).
Where do I find a printed schedule?
If you're looking online, scroll through our Schedules & Maps. Each route includes a link to download the map PDF. If you prefer a hard copy, individual route maps can be requested at the terminal.
How do I find the best route for my trip?
- Use our Trip Planner for directions or planning routes.
- Call the Customer Service Line at 225-389-8282.
How can I track CATS buses?
Use the "Track My Bus" function on the homepage of our website. You can also use the RouteShout app.
What are the terminal and customer service hours?
The Customer Care terminal operates during the following hours:
- Monday-Friday – 5:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.
- Saturday and Sunday – closed
The Customer Care Call Center is available by phone at 225-389-8282 whenever CATS buses are operating:
- Monday - Friday – 5:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m.
- Saturday and Sunday – 6:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m.
I lost something on board, what do I do?
Call our Lost & Found line at 225-389-8282 or visit the CATS Terminal. We'll do our best to help. All items turned in on board are collected at our Lost & Found at the Terminal.
Can I bring my bike on the bus?
Absolutely! We provide easy-to-use bike racks on all of our full-sized buses.
What is MEGA bus and is it a part of CATS?
Mega bus is a bus service that will transport Baton Rouge passengers to and from New Orleans, Houston and San Antonio. Tickets are purchased online by calling 1-877-462-6342. CATS serves as a loading and pick-up station only.
How do I get in touch with CATS?
The Customer Care Call Center is available by phone at 225-389-8282 whenever CATS buses are operating.
How can I let the CATS Board of Commissioners know what I think about a CATS proposal?
The CATS Board takes public comment on all proposals before it votes on them. The board meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 4:30 p.m. For more information about CATS meetings, visit the board meeting agenda page. You can also email board members at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can I get updates from CATS?
Sign up for our newsletter to keep up with CATS news. Follow our social media @BTRCATS for instant updates
How can I do business with CATS?
Visit our Doing Business with CATS portal.
Do you offer services to persons with disabilities?
Yes, CATS buses and stations are accessible for riders with disabilities. Vehicles are equipped with wheelchair lifts, ramp access and priority seating. Additionally, CATS stations, designed with accessibility in mind, offer accessible ramps.
What services do you offer riders living with disabilities?
Riders who have disabilities who live near a CATS line may be served by CATS on Demand, which serves those who cannot access a traditional bus. If a customer is 62 years or older or has an "Awards Letter," he or she can get a CATS Reduced card that allows the customer to ride for .35 cents and .25 cents for a transfer.
How do I find out more about CATS on Demand?
If a disability prevents you from using regular CATS buses, you may be eligible for paratransit services. Call CATS On Demand at 225.346.5557 to find out about special transportation service for persons with disabilities. For eligible customers, the CATS On Demand fare is $1.75 each way. Multi-ride tickets are available; contact CATS for purchase details.
How can I request a charter?
To request a charter for either a bus or trolley, gather the following information (date if event, start and end time of event, start and end location of service, type of service (one-way, round-trip, continuous shuttle), how many people will be transported, what type of vehicles are being requested) and fill out the following Charter Request form.
How much advance notice do I need to give for a charter request?
It is preferred that you provide 30-days notice. In some instances, we can accomodate shorter notice. A MINIMUM of 72-hours notice is required by FTA.
Learn more about CATS DBE Program here.