Your guide to holiday transit service

As the holidays approach fast, radio stations are switching to all-Christmas-music formats, malls are packed with desperate last-minute shoppers, and TV starts to suck really bad.

What better time to contemplate that most exciting of holiday traditions: complicated transit service schedules!

Fear not folks. Below is a day-by-day guide to what you can come to expect from the Montreal-area transit networks. Take a glance at it if you’re planning to take a bus anywhere near Christmas or New Year’s this year.

And have a bit of sympathy for that bus driver who has to spend midnight on New Year’s Eve stuck at a traffic light handing out transfers.

STM (Montreal, including the entire metro)

(From the STM’s website):

  • Dec. 24:
    • Buses and metro service will follow a regular weekday schedule
    • Paratransit service continues as normal. Customer service open from 8:30am to noon.
    • Taxi service runs as normal.
  • Dec. 25:
    • Bus routes will follow Sunday schedules for the most part.
    • Metro service will be at every 10-12 minutes on all lines.
    • January CAM monthly transit passes will be sold at the following metro stations only (remember there’s a transit fare increase for January, $66.25 for a regular pass):
      • Berri-UQAM
      • Côte-Vertu
      • Jean-Talon
      • McGill
      • Lionel-Groulx
    • Paratransit service continues as normal. Customer service is closed.
    • Taxi service is cancelled.
  • Dec. 26:
    • Bus routes will follow Saturday or Sunday schedules, depending on the route.
    • Metro service will run on Sunday schedules (Saturday for the Blue line), however additional trains will be added to the Orange (9am-6pm) and Green (11:30am-6pm) lines to accommodate rabid Boxing Day Shoppers.
    • January CAM monthly transit passes will be sold at the following metro stations only (remember there’s a transit fare increase for January, $66.25 for a regular pass):
      • Berri-UQAM
      • Côte-Vertu
      • Jean-Talon
      • McGill
      • Lionel-Groulx
    • Paratransit service continues as normal. Customer service is closed.
    • Taxi service is cancelled.
  • Dec. 27-30:
    • Bus, metro, taxi and paratransit service as normal according to day of the week.
    • Paratransit customer service open 8:30am-noon and 1pm-4pm (Dec. 27/28 only).
    • Transit passes will be sold at all metro stations (remember there’s a transit fare increase for January, $66.25 for a regular pass).
  • Dec. 31:
    • Buses and metro service will follow a regular weekday schedule. (Note that last trains leave Berri-UQAM just before 1am and both Blue Line terminuses at 12:15am).
    • Paratransit service continues as normal. Customer service closed.
    • Taxi service runs as normal.
    • Transit passes will be sold at all metro stations (remember there’s…).
  • Jan. 1:
    • Bus routes will follow Sunday schedules for the most part.
    • Metro service will be at every 10-12 minutes on all lines.
    • Paratransit service continues as normal. Customer service is closed.
    • Taxi service is cancelled.
    • Transit passes will be sold at all metro stations.
  • Jan. 2:
    • Bus routes will follow Saturday or Sunday schedules, depending on the route.
    • Metro service will run on Sunday schedules (Saturday for the Blue line).
    • Paratransit service continues as normal. Customer service is closed.
    • Taxi service is cancelled.
    • Transit passes will be sold at all metro stations.

Note that monthly passes for January will be available up to and including Jan. 7 at all metro stations, due to the holidays. As of Jan. 8, you’ll have to go to one of these metro stations to buy a pass:

  • Berri-UQAM
  • Côte-Vertu
  • Jean-Talon
  • McGill
  • Lionel-Groulx

STL (Laval)

During Laval’s free service days, drivers will be collecting for the STL’s Boomerang Committee, which provides breakfasts to needy children.

For the Express 902 bus, see the special section below.

  • Dec. 24: Saturday schedule. Free service.
  • Dec. 25: Special schedule for all routes. For most routes, it’s a Sunday schedule with departures cancelled before 11am and at or after 9pm. Check your bus’s schedule. The following routes are the exception: they will have regular Sunday morning and evening departures: 17, 24, 26, 42, 48, 50, 52/252, 55, 56, 60, 70, 73, 76, 151.
  • Dec. 26: Saturday schedule.
  • Dec. 27-30: Regular schedules according to the day of the week.
  • Dec. 31: Saturday schedule. Free service.
  • Jan. 1: Special schedule for all routes. For most routes, it’s a Sunday schedule with departures cancelled before 11am and at or after 8pm. Check your bus’s schedule. The following routes are the exception: they will have regular Sunday morning and evening departures: 17, 24, 26, 42, 48, 50, 52/252, 55, 56, 60, 70, 73, 76, 151.
  • Jan 2: Sunday schedule.

RTL (Longueuil)

From their PDF guide:

  • Dec. 24:
    • Lines 8, 13, 17, 23, 42, 45, 54, 73, 81, 83, 123 will operate on a special schedule (see PDF).
    • Lines 91, 92, 93, T22, T89, T94 will run on a regular weekday schedule (line 92’s 5:10pm Longueuil departure will be delayed 5 minutes).
    • All other lines run on a Saturday schedule.
  • Dec. 25:
    • Sunday schedule for all buses.
  • Dec. 26:
    • Lines 8 and 45 will run on a special schedule (see PDF).
    • Lines T22, T89, T94 will run on a regular weekday schedule.
    • All other lines will run on a Saturday schedule.
  • Dec. 27-30:
    • Regular service for all buses according to the day of the week.
  • Dec. 31:
    • Lines 8, 23, 45, 54 and 123 will run on a special schedule (see PDF).
    • Lines 91, 92, 93, T22, T89, T94 will run on a regular weekday schedule (line 92’s 5:10pm Longueuil departure will be delayed 5 minutes).
    • Saturday schedule for all other buses.
  • Jan. 1:
    • Sunday schedule for all buses.
  • Jan. 2:
    • Saturday schedule for all buses.

AMT (Commuter trains)

(From their website):

  • Dec. 24: Regular weekday service except:
    • Saturday service on Montreal/Deux-Montagnes
    • On the Montreal/Mont-Saint-Hilaire line:
      • Train No. 805 to Montreal (7:05am in Saint-Hilaire, arriving at Central Station at 7:50am) is cancelled — so take the train 13 minutes before or 27 minutes after.
      • A special train is added in the afternoon, leaving Central Station at 1pm for those who leave work early.
  • Dec. 25: Free trips on all commuter trains
    • Sunday service on Montreal/Deux-Montagnes and Montreal/Dorion
    • No service on the other lines
  • Dec. 26:
    • Saturday service on Montreal/Deux-Montagnes
    • Sunday service on Montreal/Dorion
    • No service on the other lines
  • Dec. 27-30: Regular service on all lines according to day of the week
  • Dec. 31: Regular weekday service except:
    • Saturday service on Montreal/Deux-Montagnes
    • On the Montreal/Mont-Saint-Hilaire line:
      • Train No. 805 to Montreal (7:05am in Saint-Hilaire, arriving at Central Station at 7:50am) is cancelled — so take the train 13 minutes before or 27 minutes after.
      • A special train is added in the afternoon, leaving Central Station at 1pm for those who leave work early.
  • Jan. 1: Free trips on all commuter trains
    • Sunday service on Montreal/Deux-Montagnes and Montreal/Dorion
    • No service on the other lines
  • Jan. 2:
    • Saturday service on Montreal/Deux-Montagnes
    • Sunday service on Montreal/Dorion
    • No service on the other lines

Express 902

The situation for this bus, which runs from the Côte-Vertu metro to Carrefour Laval is complicated by the fact that it’s run directly by the AMT, as opposed to the STM or STL. It’s complicated even more by the fact that responsibility for the line will be transferred as of Jan. 1 from the AMT to the STL. So STL rules will apply to the bus as of Jan. 1. (In other words, no free rides on this bus.)
From the bus’s (current AMT) schedule (PDF):

  • Dec. 24: Reduced schedule.
  • Dec. 25: No service.
  • Dec. 26: Reduced schedule.
  • Dec. 27, 28: Regular schedule.
  • Dec. 31: Reduced schedule.
  • Jan. 1: No service.
  • Jan. 2: Reduced schedule.

Reduced schedule: Buses will run every 30 minutes during one-way rush-hour (toward Montreal from 6:30am to 9am, toward Laval 4pm to 6pm) and every hour the rest of the day. Last bus in both directions departs at 9:59pm. Full schedule is at the bottom of the PDF.

Happy holidays folks.

8 thoughts on “Your guide to holiday transit service

  1. Josh

    Time for my annual complaint: It is almost criminal that the STM offers no special service on New Year’s Eve. If there’s a night when you want to make sure that people have as many transportation options as possible, that’s it. And if you want to stay out ’til last call? You can chase cabs for the night (which are sure to be packed) or take a night bus.

    Just great.

    Reply
  2. Fagstein Post author

    In fact, they don’t even offer Saturday night extended service, which adds 30 minutes to the closing time of the metro and the final departure of most buses.

    It’s really unfortunate.

    Reply
  3. Fagstein Post author

    The metro was kept running all night on New Year’s Eve 2000, with everyone celebrating the millennium. Since then, it’s closed at the normal time.

    Reply
  4. Pingback: Fagstein » Fagstein’s Guide to Holiday Transit

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