With the Associated Students SmartPass Clipper card and SJSU Tower Card, students and employees can have unlimited rides on Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) Local & Rapid buses, Limited routes, and Light Rail lines. There is a surcharge of $2.50 per ride for Express buses. To ride Express lines first load your Smartpass Clipper with cash value. All direct lines to SJSU are Non Express routes and are fully covered with the Smartpass.

The SmartPass Clipper is also valid on Access Paratransit service. To sign up can email at with the following information;

  • Full Name
  • Paratransit ID
  • Tower Card Number
  • Clipper Card Number

The Smartpass is pre-loaded on a Clipper card and is only valid on VTA and is NOT valid on: ACE, Amtrak, BART, Caltrain, AC Transit, Highway 17 Express, Dumbarton Express, Monterey-Salinas Transit, SamTrans and other non-VTA services. However, you can add transit passes or cash value to your clipper to use other Bay Area transit agencies. 

Please visit direct lines for information on routes that serve SJSU, trip planning assistance, and VTA alerts.

How can I get a Smart Pass Clipper?

  1. Students
  2. Open University, Special Session, International Gateways
  3. Employees

How to use the SmartPass

You must tag your Smartpass on a Clipper reader within 60 days from obtaining it. If the Smartpass is not tagged, the pass will become inactive and you will need to contact the AS Transportation Solutions department to reactivate it. The processing time takes 5-7 business days.

VTA Bus - When boarding a bus, tag your SmartPass Clipper on the Clipper card reader. The green light will indicate your pass has been accepted.

VTA Light Rail - Before boarding, you must tag your SmartPass Clipper on the card reader located on the platform and wait for the green light. On the Light Rail train, be prepared to show your SmartPass Clipper and SJSU Tower Card ID to the fare inspector upon request.

When tagging your Smartpass, the VTA Clipper Card readers will display a date of December 31st. Please ignore it - your Smartpass will remain active based on your status with the university. 

Important Additional Information

  • The SJSU Smartpass can not be virtualized (added to your smartphone). This will deactivate the Smartpass and you will be charged for a replacement.
  • You will receive only one SmartPass Clipper Card. The card's serial number is linked to your name and Tower Card number.
  • Transportation Solutions is not responsible for reimbursing the costs of VTA rides paid for by the customer due to ineligibility of SmartPass program or SmartPass malfunctions.

Important Information for Regional Transit Riders 

  • If you are eligible for the SmartPass, this may be used to ride VTA from Diridon Station or Berryessa Station to SJSU for free.
  • If you are not eligible for the SmartPass and do not meet the exceptions criteria, many regional transit lines that drop off at San Jose Diridon receive free transfers to VTA. Visit VTA's website for more information.

Questions or Concerns?

If you are experiencing an issue with your Smartpass, please complete the clipper form. The form may help you troubleshoot the issue or provide next steps to resolve it. 

Please review the SmartPass Clipper replacement, defective, and illegal use policies [pdf].