Columbus is a city with lots to do and see, which is what makes it a great place to live. However, if you or a loved one don’t have access to a car to get around, or aren’t comfortable driving, it can make it tricky to navigate the city. Fortunately, Columbus has several different options for transportation that can help make the trip from point A to point B simple. Whether you’re looking for a public transportation option, a trip in a taxi, an organization that caters to seniors, or scheduling through a ride-sharing service, Columbus has them all.
The Central Ohio Transit Authority provides public transportation to the Columbus area on their easy to ride bus system. With 81 different bus stops throughout the city, and the newly expanded Groveport Rickenbacker Employee Access Transit (GREAT) connections at the stops, you can get anywhere you want to go with public transit. Seniors over the age of 65 can obtain a COTA Reduced Fare Senior ID Card by visiting the COTA Sales Office (33 N. High Street) that entitles them to half-price fares all day, every day. COTA buses are senior-friendly, and keep accessibility top of mind with buses that are low to the curb, offer wheelchair ramps, and accommodate service animals for free.
COTA also offers door-to-door Mobility Services for those who qualify. Call 614-275-5828 for more information on criteria and programs available in the city.
Another option for reliable point to point transportation in Columbus are the areas many licensed taxis service. Companies like Yellow Cab, Columbus Taxi Service, and Orange Cab have drivers who can take you to the airport or other destinations in the city. Many companies offer the option to book either online or over the phone, and you can schedule rides in advance or request an on the spot pick up. Some services will also allow you to pre-pay for a ride when you schedule it, which is a great option for when you arrange transportation for a parent or loved one and want to take care of the details ahead of time.
There are several senior speciality transportation services available in Columbus including Caring Hands Transportation of Ohio and Express Medical Transportation. Additionally, homemaking and health services companies like Options Home Services also offer transportation programs that provide a driver to help a senior run errands, go to a social event, head to a medical appointment or pharmacy, or even take a day trip around town. The types of services available will vary depending on the provider, so be sure to call ahead to schedule a ride.
Smartphone app based ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft are both available in Columbus. If you’re tech savvy, you can access the app to schedule a ride in advance or request an immediate pick up at your location. Both companies have a similar pricing structure that includes increased fares at more popular travel times like rush hour. Be sure to keep an eye out for “surge pricing” to avoid paying more than you expect for a ride.
The Franklin County office on Aging can help answer additional questions on transportation options for seniors. Call them at (614) 525-6200 to speak with someone who can answer questions and assist with matching your needs to the right ride in the city.
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