How to Ride Rail

Step 1 - Go to your Nearest Rail Station

You can board or exit rail at many stations across the metro area (see map). Parking is available at rail stations that have Park-n-Ride lots. Parking fees apply at select Park-n-Ride locations; visit how to park for more information. In addition, many stations are served by convenient bus routes and FlexRide that circulate throughout nearby neighborhoods.Explore rail with our interactive system map
View the rail map and get station information

Step 2 - Pay your Fare

A valid ticket is required before you board the rail. To purchase a ticket, use the ticket vending machines (TVMs) located at each station. Cash (coins and bills) and debit/credit cards are accepted at TVMs. TVMs accept VISA, MasterCard, Discover and American Express. Your ticket will be automatically validated with the date and time when you purchase it from the machine.3-Hour Passes are valid for unlimited trips at the same service level on other buses or trains. Also available for purchase are Day Passes, which allow you to take unlimited rides on bus or train all day for the price of a round-trip.

Learn more about using ticket vending machines

Validate tickets

If you use a ticket from a 10-Ride ticket book or a Free Ride Coupon, validate your ticket at the ticket validator at the rail station. Tickets are valid for 3 hours after the time of validation.


If you have a valid monthly pass or 3-Hour Pass, you do not have to buy a ticket. Your monthly pass is valid only for travel in the fare zones indicated on the pass. To obtain a fare upgrade to a Regional/Airport Day Pass, obtain a fare upgrade from a ticket vending machine. If you are using a smart card, you must tap on at a smart card reader located along the rail platform prior to boarding the train. Be sure to verify the default service level on the reader and if necessary select your correct service level prior to tapping your card.

Step 3 - Locate the Correct Platform

Overhead signs next to the rail tracks indicate which direction the train is going. Signs on each train indicate the rail line and the final destination for that train.

Step 4 - Stand Behind the Yellow Strip

Yellow strips located next to the tracks indicate the safe waiting distance from the trains. Stay behind the strip until the train comes to a complete stop. Once the train has stopped the doors open automatically, or you can open the door by pushing one of the lighted green buttons.

Step 5 - Prepare to Board

It is easier and faster for everyone if you allow other passengers to get off the train before you board.

If you are riding rail to special events, crowds may be waiting to board at some stations. Please form orderly lines and be patient if you have to wait a few extra minutes until a train arrives with available space.

Riding Commuter Rail

Commuter rail comes to Denver with the A Line and the B Line to Westminster. Commuter rail has many new, different features than light rail. Commuter rail trains carry more passengers, operate at higher speeds and make fewer stops than light rail.

The A Line provides fast, convenient service to DIA. Additionally, commuter rail vehicles offer different cargo space options for travelers making their way to and from Denver International Airport.

Boarding the Train

Once the train has come to a complete stop and the doors have opened, you may safely board the train. If you see the doors are closing, please wait for the next train to safely board.

Luggage Storage

Commuter rail vehicles feature overhead storage running the entire length of the vehicle, similar to an airplane or regional bus. Additionally, there are two designated luggage storage racks per vehicle.

Bikes and Large Cargo

Each vehicle has two multi-purpose storage racks. Each storage area can hold two bikes, four per vehicle. This large storage space is also ideal for large pieces of luggage like skis and snowboards.

Level Boarding

With commuter rail cars, every door has level boarding. This means there are no steps to maneuver when boarding or exiting the train. You can roll your bike, luggage, stroller, or wheel chair directly onto the vehicle.

Learn more about riding commuter rail

Be Safe Around Buses and Trains

Don't touch those wires. The wires above the train are dangerous and extremely high voltage. Never try to touch them or reach them with an object.

When it's gone, it's gone. Never chase or touch a moving vehicle. Your life is more important than a few missed minutes.

Stay off the tracks. Stay alert when near the tracks - it might save your life. Trains travel at high speeds, come from both directions and can't stop very easily.

Learn more about being safe around buses and trains

Step 6 - Be Ready for Fare Inspection

Fare inspectors circulate through rail cars to check for valid fare. When asked, show your validated ticket, pass, upgrade, zone receipt, smart card or transfer. You may also be asked to show your ticket, pass or transfer at rail stations in areas identified by "Fare Paid Zone" signs.

Step 7 - Exit at your Stop

Your train will stop at every station along the route. To exit, the door will open automatically or push the "Open Door" button located near the door.

How to Transfer between Bus and Rail

More Information

Light Rail Fares

After more than a year of engagement with the community, RTD is pleased to introduce a simpler, more affordable, and more equitable fare system.

Find fare information here

Need Help with a Transfer?

Learn more about transfers here

View RTD Light Rail Schedules on Next Ride

View light rail schedules