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  1. Home
  2. Employee and Family Resources
  3. Worklife Balance
  4. Transportation Benefits
  5. Public Transportation Incentive Program (PTIP)

Public Transportation Incentive Program (PTIP)

What Is PTIP?

The Public Transportation Incentive Program (PTIP) is a transportation benefit program established to encourage employee use of mass transportation to help reduce air pollution and traffic congestion.  In the National Capital Region (NCR), transit benefits are offered through SmarTrip.  Field Offices outside of NCR offer reimbursement through the Concur travel system.  The maximum benefit allowance is $280 per month.  

Who Is Eligible?

Front of a smartrip card
A SmarTrip® card is a permanent, rechargeable
card used to pay Metrorail and local bus system
fares. It's plastic, like a credit card, and is
embedded with a special computer chip that
keeps track of the value of the card.

All CBP federal employees residing in the United States who:

  • Use mass public transportation as their daily means of commuting to and from work
  • Are not assigned a parking space or receive subsidized parking benefits
  • Are not enrolled in any other federal agency transit or commuting program

Eligible Modes of Transportation

Mass transit methods recognized as qualified means of transportation include:

  • Commuter Bus
  • Commuter Train
  • Subway/Light Rail
  • Vanpool
  • Ferry (Passenger Only)

Ineligible Modes of Transportation

The following methods are not recognized and are not eligible for PTIP:

  • Airplanes
  • Bike or Electric Scooter Sharing
  • Carpools or Personal Ride Sharing
  • Ferry (with vehicles)
  • Motorcycles
  • On-demand Ride Sharing Services (such as Uber or Lyft)
  • Private Owned Vehicles
  • Walkers/Pedestrians

How Does the Program Work?

Within NCR:

  • Employees must register their SmarTrip card and enroll in the SmartBenefit™ program. SmarTrip also allows for mobile pay options.
  • SmarTrip is accepted by Metro and regional transit providers in the Washington, DC area. Employees using regional transit providers must set up a Passenger Allocation account within their SmarTrip accounts to use PTIP benefits.  Additional information regarding SmartBenefits Passenger Allocation and which transit providers require it can be found on CommuterDirect.com.
  • PTIP benefits are automatically loaded every month onto the SmarTrip card. 
  • Employees do not need to submit vouchers or certifications each month.

Field Offices Outside of NCR:

  • Employees approved for PTIP are reimbursed via the local travel system (Concur).
  • Participants submit claims (PTIP vouchers) between the 1st and 15th of the month for previous month's benefits.  
  • Reimbursements are generally received within 10 days of PTIP voucher approval through the local travel system (Concur).
  • Employees should contact their local PTIP Coordinator for additional guidance.

How to Apply for Transit Benefits?

All eligible CBP federal employees must complete a CBP PTIP Application online through CBP e-Forms during their scheduled certification period.  CBP e-Forms is currently only accessible from a government device.  In the event CBP e-Forms is unavailable, employees should contact ptip@cbp.dhs.gov for assistance.  

Typically, applications submitted before the 15th of the month will be approved for benefits the following month.  Applications submitted after the 15th of the  month usually receive transit benefits 30 to 45 days later.  Employees should contact PTIP or their local PTIP Coordinator for questions related to their application.

For More Information Contact:

Public Transportation Incentive Program (PTIP)
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW , Suite 3.2-C 
Washington, DC 20229
Phone: 202-344-2130 
Email: ptip@cbp.dhs.gov

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  • Last Modified: February 7, 2022
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