Below are a list of frequently asked questions about Yates Dial-A-Ride. If you have further questions, please contact us at 231.745.7311.
Why should I consider Yates Dial-A-Ride for my transportation needs?
Yates Dial-A-Ride helps many of our county’s residents maintain their freedom and independence by having a source of reliable and safe transportation. We are a key lifeline for many to get to the doctor, bank, pharmacy, and grocery store. Our service offers relief for parents who shuttle youth to and from school and extra-curricular activities. Our fares are extremely affordable so riders save money on gas and car care.
What area do Yates Dial-A-Ride buses cover?
Our buses can transport you anywhere in Lake County that is reachable by bus.
Can I use Yates Dial-A-Ride to take me outside of Lake County?
Yates Dial-A-Ride operates within Lake County, within the designated county lines. We do have agreements with transit agencies in bordering counties to make specific runs. For example, we do travel from Lake County to Walmart in Ludington once a week on Thursday and to The Depot in Reed City on the first Tuesday of the month. Passengers are dropped off at noon and are picked up for the ride back at 4:00 p.m. These rides must be scheduled 48 hours in advance. However, this service has been suspended during the pandemic of COVID-19.
If you want to travel outside the county other days/times, Yates Dial-A-Ride can take you to a location on the county line and you can arrange for pickup by other transit agencies or services.
How do I pay for a ride?
You can pay with cash or bus tokens. Tokens can be obtained in our office during our business hours and cost 50 cents each. Drivers do not carry change.
What are the rules about transporting bottles and cans on the bus?
Dial-A-Ride passengers are required to rinse out cans and bottles before bringing them on board the bus. Cans and bottles can only be transported in plastic bags and in some cases double bagging will be necessary. When using plastic bags you must tie them closed. All passengers are limited to one 30-gallon size bag of cans or bottles that can be placed on or near their lap. They must not be placed in an adjacent seat or in the aisle for reasons of safety.
Any Dial-A-Ride passenger carrying unclean/ uncontained cans and bottles on board the bus creates an unsafe environment for all occupants. Cans and bottles could be thrown into other passengers or roll into the driver’s compartment causing serious problems. They also pose a potential hazard as the content from them could leak and cause the floor to become wet and slippery. Cans and bottles in the aisle are a hazard to all occupants.
What are the rules about transporting groceries on the bus?
Dial-A-Ride passengers will be limited to the amount that can be carried on board in one boarding. Groceries must be in bags or boxes that are large enough that groceries are not over the top. When using plastic bags you must tie them closed. All passengers are limited to three bags or two boxes (12”x24”) that can be placed on or near their lap. Grocery bags and other portables must not be placed in an adjacent seat or in the aisle for reasons of safety. Personal grocery carts are allowed and will be secured to the lift.
Any Dial-A-Ride passenger with more grocery bags than they can manage on board the bus creates an unsafe environment for all occupants. Objects could be thrown into other passengers or objects roll into the driver’s compartment causing serious problems. Objects in the aisle are a hazard to all occupants.
How much advanced notice is needed to schedule a ride?
We will pick you up as soon as possible but many factors influence pick up times. Be aware that the first few days of the month tend to be especially busy. The weather and road conditions can also be a factor.
What age is considered a “Senior” to qualify for a reduced bus fare?
To qualify for a reduced senior fare, you must be 60 years of age.
How Can I Get a Disability/Reduced Fare ID Card?
Please call us at 231.745.7311 and ask for more informtion. You will need to get the proper paperwork completed by your physician.
I use a wheelchair or mobility device. Can I be transported by Yates Dial-A-Ride?
Yes! Many of our vehicles have wheelchair lifts. When you schedule your ride, just make sure to let the dispatcher know you will be transporting with a wheelchair or mobility device and will need a bus with a lift.
Can I bring my bike on the bus?
We do have bike racks on the front of several of our buses. When you schedule your ride, let the dispatcher know that you need to transport your bike as well. There is no extra charge to have your bike transported when you are riding the bus.
If I see a bus, can I just flag it down for a ride or if I see a bus stopped at a location, can I board the bus without calling in advance for a ride
Our dispatchers may be sending that bus in the opposite direction than you want to travel, so it only makes sense to call us beforehand so that we can route our buses in a way that gets you where you need to go in a timely manner. We do not accept ‘walk on’ passengers so please call in advance to schedule your ride.
I forgot or lost something on the bus? Is there a lost & found?
Please report lost or forgotten items to our office as soon as possible. Call us at 231.745.7311 and inform the dispatcher.
How can I make a complaint or a suggestion? How can I report an issue?
Please call us during our business hours at 231.745.7311. Your call will be directed to the appropriate personnel to address the specific issue/suggestion/complaint.
Are all Dial-A-Ride systems connected somehow? Is Yates Dial-A-Ride operated by the same people as Ludington Dial-A-Ride, for example?
No. The term “dial-a-ride” describes the type of service we offer (you call us and we send a vehicle to pick you up—also called “demand-response”). Yates Dial-A-Ride is a separate entity from other organizations that have “dial-a-ride” in their names.
Can I bring my service dog on the bus? What about my dog that is strictly a pet?
Yates Dial-A-Ride will allow service animals on board its buses. Service animals are working animals, not pets. They are individually trained to perform tasks for people with disabilities such as guiding people who are blind, alerting people who are deaf or pulling a wheel chair. Pets that are not service animals can ride the bus IF they are inside approved enclosed carriers.
Sometimes I see Yates Dial-A-Ride buses parked in a residential driveway for an extended period of time on an almost daily basis. What’s that about?
Our bus drivers are allowed to take the bus they are driving to their homes (if their home is located in –Lake County–) during their lunch breaks. This has been proven to be a more efficient use of time and funds than to have the drivers return to the base, pick up their car and then go home for lunch, drive back to the base to get a bus and then return to their service area to resume work.
What days is Yates Dial-A-Ride closed?
We are not open on Sundays. We are also closed for the following holidays: New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.
Does Yates Dial-A-Ride close when the weather is bad?
We know that our community depends on us for their transportation needs so we do our best to remain open, even in inclement weather. Just because Baldwin Community Schools are closed due to the weather does not mean that our operation is closed for the day. Passengers are encouraged to plan extra time into their commute. If the weather is particularly bad, we may limit our runs to main roads and sometimes we do have to temporarily shut down our operation. In such cases, we will be listed as CLOSED with the postings seen on TV 9 and 10.