TriMet has officially given its blessing for Portlanders to hit the town this New Year’s Eve.
The transit agency announced this week that it is bringing back free rides on the last night of the year after it scrapped the popular program in 2020.
The tradition was canceled last year to discourage large gatherings and encourage people to celebrate from the comfort of their couch—though the cancellation of every single ballroom bash and collective countdown kept most at home anyway. Also, at the time, COVID-19 cases were spiking and, of course, widespread vaccinations were still months away.
But now that more people are inoculated and boosted, and New Year’s Eve parties are back on at dozens of restaurants, bars and hotels across town, TriMet is back onboard. In partnership with the Oregon Department of Transportation, all fares on MAX trains, buses and the Portland Streetcar will be waived starting at 8 pm Friday, Dec. 31.
MAX Blue, Green, Orange and Yellow lines will provide extended service, running until 3 am approximately every 30 minutes. Red Line trains are also scheduled to make trips every half-hour, but that route’s service ends earlier. The last train to Portland International Airport will depart Pioneer Courthouse Square at 12:48 am on New Year’s Day, so plan accordingly if you were hoping to extend your revelry with a late-night flight to another time zone.