Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Back to the Flex home page

General Info

How does Ride On Flex work?

Ride On Flex takes multiple passengers heading in the same direction and books them into a shared vehicle. Using the Ride On Flex mobile app, input the address and we’ll match you with a vehicle going your way. Flex picks you up at a nearby corner and drops you off near your requested destination. Smart algorithms provide trip times that are comparable to other ride shares and much more convenient than other modes of travel.

What areas does Flex serve—and why is it limited?

Flex serves limited zones within Glenmont/Wheaton and Rockville. The on-demand Flex model relies on small service zones to help keep wait times reasonable. If the Flex pilot program is successful, the number of zones served will probably grow over time.

How much does a Flex ride cost?

Standard Ride On fare policy applies. That means your ride costs no more than $2!

What are Flex buses like?

These specially branded 11 passenger buses are comfortable, offer free WiFi and are wheelchair accessible. We also think they look terrific.

How long will I wait?

You'll always get an accurate estimate of your pick-up time before booking. You can also track your bus in real time in the app.

Will the bus wait for me at my pickup point?

The bus operator will wait one minute after arrival at your pickup location. Please be on time. Success of this service depends on speed and reliability.

How many passengers will I share a vehicle with?

The number of passengers varies. Our comfortable buses can accommodate up to 11 people. Up to 6 seats can be reserved with each booking.

Where can Flex take me?

Anywhere in your zone! It might be a Metro station, shopping center, office, library, other public facility—or home. You tell us.

When is Flex available?

In Rockville: Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
In Glenmont/Wheaton: Monday – Friday, 6:00 – 9:00 a.m. and 3:30 – 7:00 p.m.

Where do I get the Ride On Flex app?

Download it for free from Apple’s App Store or Google Play.

How old do you have to be to use Flex?

This is a parental decision. Children under 5 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian and have a seat for them included in the booking.

Does the Kids Ride Free program apply to Flex?

Yes! Children K-12 ride free 2-8 pm, June 26-28, and during all service hours starting July 1, 2019.

What kind of mobility devices can Flex accommodate?

Walkers, wheelchairs and sit-down motorized chairs.

Can I book a roundtrip?

No. All bookings are one way.

Can I make an advance reservation?

No. When you request a ride, you are offered the next available time.

What else do I need to know before riding the Flex?

  • NO BOARDING WITHOUT A BOOKED RESERVATION FOR ALL RIDERS.
  • The bus operator will ask for your name on boarding.
  • Boarding is at designated corners, not fixed stops (curb-to-curb service for persons with wheelchairs).
  • Flex boarding at Metro stations
    • Glenmont: Kiss & Ride lot
    • Wheaton: Bus Bay H
    • Rockville: Kiss & Ride lot (West)
  • Pay as you board with a SmarTrip® card or cash/passes/tokens.
  • You cannot add value to a SmarTrip® card on board the Flex. Always have enough fare on your card or use cash/tokens/passes.
  • No-show riders will have their registrations suspended after three no-shows.

I’m Still Curious

These Flex zones aren’t near me. When will it come to my neighborhood?

Ride On Flex is a pilot program of the Montgomery County Department of Transportation. We’re eager to learn how our residents use this innovative on-demand transit option and hope to bring it to more areas of the county over time. Please be patient as we experiment, listen and learn.

How can I offer feedback about Flex?

We hope you will! There are three ways:

  • Riders can tap the “Contact Ride On Flex” button in the Ride On Flex mobile app and text us with questions or issues. To access the button, tap the three horizontal bars at the top left corner of the app screen.
  • After you complete a Flex trip, rate us in the Ride On Flex app.
  • Send questions or suggestions anytime to RideOn.FlexCustomerService@montgomerycountymd.gov.

So this is a pilot program. What’s that?

A pilot program is a great way to test a new concept on a smaller scale. With Flex, we want to know things like: will residents like this new option for getting around in the served zones? Will they use it instead of jumping in a car for short trips? What adjustments do we need to make to the service to better meet residents’ needs? The answers to these questions will help us judge how well Flex fits in Montgomery County—and hopefully prepare us to scale up service to more neighborhoods. The pilot runs from June 2019 to June 2020.

What privacy policy governs the use of my information?

See the Montgomery County Privacy Policy.

Why can’t I add money to a SmarTrip card on the bus?

Adding money to SmarTrip cards on the bus would slow down the service. To be successful, Flex must be quick and reliable.

Is Flex available as a subscription service?

No. You will register for the service when you download the app, but it is offered on demand only.

Can I book a ride with a phone call instead of the app?

Not currently. However, we are exploring the possibility of supporting call-in bookings in the future.

Where did Flex come from?

Many, many minds! MCDOT began with a rough plan inspired by a few innovative transit programs appearing elsewhere in the country. We talked with countless community groups who helped us refine our plan for this pilot program. We look forward to ongoing community input to make Flex an indispensable part of the Montgomery County transit network.

Back of Flex bus

Lose an item on a Ride On bus? Contact our Lost & Found.