Halifax Transit has designed policies and guidelines to ensure a positive and safe travel experience for both you and the bus/ferry operators.
Food and beverages
On Halifax Transit buses
You can bring food or drink carried within sealable (spill proof) containers on Halifax Transit buses. As there is the potential for spillage during the acceleration or deceleration of a transit bus, and as buses may decelerate rapidly to avoid traffic hazards, food of any kind may not be consumed. Beverages such as coffee may be consumed on Halifax Transit buses contingent on the use of sealable containers. Single use disposable coffee cups are not permitted .
On Halifax ferries
Food and drinks are permitted, and waste bins are provided. Under no circumstances is open alcohol allowed onboard or to be consumed on any Halifax Transit vehicle.
Pets are allowed on Halifax Transit vehicles and ferries if properly restrained in a closed pet container that prevents them from escaping. Passengers carrying an appropriate container may travel with the container either on their lap or placed on the floor. The container cannot impede free passage of customers or block any doors or emergency exits. Passengers should ensure containers are clean, free of odor, and have no sharp edges. Pets are not to be left unattended at any time. Pet containers are not to exceed 16" (40.6cm) high X 21" (53.3cm) deep X 27" (68.6cm) wide.
The transit operator, at their discretion, may not allow a passenger to board with their pet if there is a concern for the safety or comfort of fellow passengers. If only standing room is available the transit operator may refuse passage to the pet and pet owner even with an adequate container.
Customers who require the support of a service animal are permitted to bring their service animals into all Halifax Transit facilities and on all vehicles and vessels. For the safety of all customers, service animals must be securely leashed and under the care and control of the owner at all times.
Transit operators may deny access to a service animal if the operator has reasonable grounds to believe that the service animal poses a risk of injury to other passengers. The operator will not be held responsible if a service animal causes injury to a passenger.
Customers are not required to carry identification for their service animal; however, Halifax Transit encourages the use of certification documents or municipally issued Service Animal Identification (ID) tags to assist transit operators in distinguishing between service animals and pets. Customers without identification for their service animal will be asked to provide contact information (name, address, and telephone number) to facilitate their future access to the transit system.
For the convenience of passengers who require the support of a service animal but who do not have or are unable to conveniently carry certification identification, the municipality will provide an identifiable tag to individuals who require a service animal. You can license or renew the licence for your service animal in person at any municipal Citizen Contact Centre or select veterinary clinics.
Bike racks on Halifax buses
Bike racks are located at the front of fitted buses and can hold a maximum of two bikes. Bike racks are available on a first come first serve basis. You are responsible for both loading and unloading your bike—the driver can’t help you. You cannot bring your bicycle onto the bus; if rack space is not available, you have to wait for the next bus with rack space. Racks are on select buses year round, and no cyclist is to be prohibited use when an open space on rack is available.
Bikes and Bike Racks on Ferries
There are dedicated bike racks on the Ferries to accommodate up to 12 bikes per trip depending on their configuration. Ferry Crew or Terminal Security may restrict the number of bikes depending on other safety and security factors.
Segways and like devices are prohibited from Halifax Transit Ferries.
Motorized bicycles, both gas and electric-powered, are not permitted on Halifax Transit conventional buses. Electric-powered bicycles are permitted to be transported on Halifax Transit ferries; however, gas-powered bicycles are not.
Passengers are allowed to travel with luggage on all Halifax Transit buses only if the luggage can be safely stowed on the floor directly in front of you, on your lap, or in the overhead luggage rack where provided (MetroX Airport/Fall River buses only). Aisles and doorways must always be clear of any items that could impede the flow of passengers.
Bags and backpacks
Similar to luggage, your bag or backpack should not obstruct other passengers and should be stowed directly in front of you, on your lap, or in the overhead racks where provided. Bags and backpacks cannot block the doors or aisles of the bus.
You can bring strollers on Halifax Transit vehicles as long as they are smaller than 42" x 22.5" (double wide strollers will not be allowed). The transit operator will have ultimate discretion based on the size of the stroller or the amount of room available on the bus due to load size.
Wheelchairs / Scooters
Wheelchairs and mobility scooters are allowed on all Access -A-Buses, designated ALF conventional bus routes, and ferries.
For passengers with mobility devices using ALF buses, it is imperative that the mobility device is able to maneuver unhindered when on the bus and adheres to the following dimensions::
- wheelchairs: 48" x 30"
- three-wheeled scooters: 40” x 21.125”
- four-wheeled scooters: 40.25” x 21.25”
All mobility devices will require at least two anchor or tie down points, and should have 4 anchor or tie down points if possible to secure the device to the bus. These are not provided by Halifax Transit and are the responsibility of the passenger to provide. Passengers using scooters are required to manoeuvre into the docking station and transfer to a fixed seat independently. The operator will then secure the mobile device to the bus.
When using ALF buses equipped with the rear-facing restraint system, it is essential that all mobility devices conform to the following:
- Front brakes on the mobility device must be applied and/or the power switched off when the vehicle is in motion.
- Bags/knapsacks/packages will not be removed by operators when securing wheelchairs for transport; wheelchairs will be secured with the bags/knapsacks left in place. Halifax Transit is not responsible for any contents during transport - the passenger is responsible for the contents of their bags/knapsacks/packages while the bus is in motion.
To ensure the safety of all bus passengers, Halifax Transit is unable to provide service for mobility devices that do not fall within the dimensions described above or if a passenger refuses to comply with the passive restraint securement requirements.
In accordance with the Smoke-free Places Act and By-Law N-300 (Respecting Nuisances and Smoking), smoking and vaping on municipal property, including transit property and sidewalks, is permitted only within municipal designated smoking areas (DSAs). This includes both smoking and vaping tobacco and cannabis products.
CLICK HERE to view the online map of DSAs that have been installed to date.
Designated smoking areas (DSAs) exist on some municipal property, and are indicated by signs or stickers. Each sign/sticker indicates how far the DSA extends for that location. Click here for more information on cannabis and smoking in Halifax.
Presently, all of Halifax Transit's bus fleet, as well as its ferry terminals, have been outfitted with surveillance cameras to ensure greater security for its passengers and operators.
Signs and/or decals have been posted on the buses and terminals to advise passengers of the presence of cameras, as required by privacy laws.
All passengers are required to wear: top, bottoms, and footwear. Those failing to meet these requirements will be denied service.
Transit operators shall not deny access to passengers who are wearing religious, cultural, or medical clothing, which may include face coverings.
Skates or roller skates are not permitted to be worn on the bus.
A consistent approach is taken across all Halifax business units to ensure that all municipal vehicles adhere to the following limitations:
- vehicles shall never be left idling when unattended
- engine warm up periods will not exceed one minute
- vehicles shall be shut down whenever idling periods are expected to exceed one minute
Halifax Transit operators are expected to adhere to the three minute rule. Specifically, during any layover in excess of minutes, operators are expected to shut down the bus. Exceptions to this policy have been identified and only exist under the following circumstances:
- under extreme weather conditions (heat/cold) or any other time when the health and safety of the employee or others may be jeopardized
- to enable proper snow/ice clearing from vehicles
- if the unit is not expected to be able to restart due to a mechanical problem
Garbage and recycling
In order to maintain a safe and sanitary environment, the transportation of garbage, recycling, or composting on Halifax Transit vehicles is prohibited. Suspected violators shall be denied access to a vehicle.
Lost and found
All found items are catalogued by the Halifax Transit Lost and Found Department. Valuable items are held for 30 days. Items not deemed valuable are held for 14 days. Perishable items are disposed of immediately. Halifax Transit staff do their best to contact the owner of the item. Call the Halifax Transit Lost and Found Department at 902.490.6617 if you think you’ve left an item on a bus or ferry.