Bus & Commuting

Always follow the rules of the road when biking, and be sure to wear protective gear. Click to enlarge a quick guide to safe biking.

Local Bus & Commuting

Ride one of the main buses that make commuting at Cornell more sustainable. Public transportation helps reduce single-occupancy vehicles, fossil fuel usage, and local air pollution.

Take Action on Campus

  • Use your ID as a bus pass for TCAT rides

  • Purchase a bus pass for commutes and use on campus

  • Learn about the TCAT Bike Option for combining bus and bike

Local Bus Operations

Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit, Inc., usually referred to as TCAT, is the local public transport operator. TCAT is funded jointly by Cornell University, Tompkins County, and the City of Ithaca.

Big Red Bear stands in front of a TCAT bus

Free and Discounted Bus Passes

Employee Discounts
  • Employees ride the bus free.  All Cornell staff, including temporary employees, affiliates, and retirees can use their Cornell ID card to ride anywhere TCAT goes, any time TCAT runs — free.

  • This unlimited ride privilege allows employees more flexibility in planning their commute and can help reduce the number of vehicles on campus.

  • Faculty/staff spouse/partners with a CU ID card receive unlimited rides on TCAT night routes 90, 92, and 93.

Student Discounts
  • Bus fare is free for the first year for all new students — just use your Cornell ID card.

  • After the first year, all Cornell students receive free, unlimited rides on all TCAT buses after 6 p.m. on weekdays, and anytime Saturday and Sunday.

  • Students can purchase discounted bus passes and OmniRide privileges at myparking.cornell.edu

  • Continuing education students and student spouse/partners with a CU ID card receive unlimited rides on TCAT night routes 90, 92, and 93

Riding the Bus Around Ithaca

Cornell offers employees and students partially- or fully-subsidized bus passes.  Your bus pass is your Cornell ID Card. 

Download the Apps

Major Routes of Interest
No buses are in service from 1:30 am - 4:00 am
10 - Get downtown and circulate around campus
32 - Becomes 15/17 (15 goes to Wegmans)
15 - Southside Shopper
32 - Airport route
30 - Ithaca mall

Campus Routes
These routes only serve the Cornell campus
82, 83, 81, all 90's

Who receives a fully-subsidized bus pass?

All students new to their program of study at Cornell. This includes first-year undergraduate, graduate, and Ph.D. students in the first year of their program, and transfer students in their first year at Cornell.

Expires August 31st for Fall entrants
Expires December 31st for Spring entrants

See if you qualify: New student bus passes

Purchase a Bus Pass for Ithaca/Tompkins County 

Taking the Bus to New York City (Campus-to-Campus)

Getting Home Quickly as a Bus Rider

I want to ride the bus, but what if I need to get home or to a sick child quickly?
Ithaca's Center for Community Transportation (CCT) offers a Backup Ride Home for community members with an unexpected need to return home and conventional methods are not feasible. CCT's service replaces the discontinued Emergency Ride service.

How We Incentivize Alternative Transportation

Employee Onboarding Consultation
Since 2011, all new employees have received consultation during onboarding to discuss their transportation options, including the OmniRide program, biking & walking, and carpooling & ridesharing.

Transportation Consultants
Transportation staff is able to provide new staff members with an objective view of the various travel options and information about incentives to encourage the use of alternative commuting methods before employees make a commuting decision. Contact transportation@cornell.edu to discuss your options.

Campus-to-Campus Bus

Bus between New York City and Cornell Ithaca Campus

The Campus to Campus (C2C) bus was launched in 2004 and provides an express connection between the Cornell Ithaca Campus and its network in New York City. Cornell launched C2C with the goal of providing a low-carbon, alternative transportation option to cut down on single occupancy vehicle trips between Upstate New York and the City and to make business travel between the two areas easier for travelers.

A new, more fuel-efficient bus was added to the fleet in November 2013. The bus has better emissions control to help keep the air cleaner and has an increased fuel efficiency of 6.4 mpg, greater than the typical 5.8 mpg of large buses. The bus is equipped with a reverse osmosis water system, eliminating the need for bottled water.

Why take the C2C Bus?

  • C2C operates seven days a week year-round (except holidays) with several trips per day

  • Ample work room and reliable on-board internet service

  • Clean, fresh water and delicious snacks – free of charge

  • Recycling and trash on board

  • Clean bathroom on board

  • By taking the bus instead of driving a single-passenger vehicle, you are reducing the carbon impact of your travel by about 352 pounds per round-trip