Universal bus passes start at SIIT, FNUC

First Nations post-secondary students are now part of a City of Saskatoon bus pass program — meaning relatively cheap bus rides, but a mandatory fee.

First Nations post-secondary students are now part of a City of Saskatoon bus pass program — meaning relatively cheap bus rides, but a mandatory fee.

It's called the universal bus pass or U-Pass. Introduced to University of Saskatchewan students in September 2007, it will now be provided to students at the First Nations University of Canada and the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies.

It was controversial when first introduced at the U of S. Some students said they walked or had cars and didn't need bus passes.

The $96.62 per semester (or $289.86 for a full year) cost of the pass will now be paid at the start of each school year.

The city says students who previously paid for monthly adult bus passes would have had to pay $75 a month. Based on that, the savings on a U-Pass would be $610.14 for a full year.