Commuter Tax Benefits for Transit Have Increased in 2013

February 7, 2013 10:07 am · 8 comments

Commuter tax benefits for transit have increased in 2013, making BART an even better value, according to BART.

The following information is from BART:

Thanks to the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, there’s an increase in the amount you can save using pre-tax dollars for commuting. The tax code now allows up to $245 per month for qualified transit fares.

And there’s another up to $245 per month allowed for qualified transit parking, including parking at BART stations.

You can take advantage of the benefits through employer-sponsored programs. Talk to your employer about what’s available or get more details at

Employees who set aside income on a pre-tax basis do not pay federal income or payroll taxes on the income set aside. If you have a combined (local, state, federal) tax rate of 40% and spend $240 per month on BART fares, you could save nearly $100 each month or $1,200 a year.

If you pay for monthly BART parking at $63 per month, you could save an additional $25 per month or $300 per year.

Customers already rate BART as a good value for the money and these programs make it even better. In the 2012 customer satisfaction survey 70 percent rated BART a good value, up from 64 percent in 2010.

Dorothy February 7, 2013 at 11:05 AM

I used this credit before I retired. As a tax break for the working folks it’s worth it.

KJ February 7, 2013 at 11:13 AM

This can also be used to purchase County Connection bus passes and, of course, the Clipper card (which can be used on BART, San Francisco MUNI, Golden Gate Transit buses and ferries, AC Transit, Caltrain, SamTrans, and VTA).

When are we going to be able to use the Clipper Card on County Connection? It is so much more convenient!

Don't Censor Me Bro February 7, 2013 at 12:02 PM

Contra Costa County employs about 8,000 people and offers NOTHING. Yet they talk about how “green” they are.

nonewtaxesinwc February 7, 2013 at 12:05 PM

BART’s PR machine is gearing up…rate increase for this summer???

Mel February 7, 2013 at 2:10 PM

I have used the commuter tax benefits for years and I am so happy they finally raised it to a better rate. I pay BART $11 each day I commute to work for fare and parking and the increased limit is much appreciated.

SDLFKJ February 8, 2013 at 1:38 AM

But what about students who have to commute! Somebody petition for student discounts, please!

cainmyrearview February 8, 2013 at 8:54 AM

BE AWARE this is retroactive to January 2012 so if you were using this credit last year you may have to have this credit recalculated for tax purposes before you file your taxes this year.

Rage Ricin February 8, 2013 at 11:53 AM

Thanks for posting this! I wasn’t aware of this change and will be saving extra cash!

@cainmyrearview #7 – Per Publication 15-B 2013, I wasn’t able to verify retroactive action to 2012. Can you confirm?

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