Over half of our customers are using and saving money paying their fares with the DARTCard! Unfortunately, sometimes problems do arise with our equipment resulting in you, our valued customer, having trouble with the card. Here's a list of questions and answers about what to do if you have problems with your card and how we'll make things right.

But first some problem terms you should know -

Malfunction - the DARTCard can't be read by the fare box but one can see the DARTCard.

Mutilated - the DARTCard was destroyed when trying to retrieve it from the fare box equipment.

Misplacement - the customer mistakenly placed the DARTCard in the bill slot.

Remaining Value - when an existing DARTCard becomes full, the customer leaves the fare box area before the fare box issues a new Remaining Value Card.

Q: What happens if the farebox won't read my card?
A: When a DARTCard has remaining value or malfunctions on first use or after it has already been used, the bus driver will write the date, time, their DTC employee number, and bus number on the DARTCard, and will then punch several holes in the magnetic strip to disable the card. The bus driver will request that you return the disabled DARTCard for replacement to one of the following DART First State Transportation Stores:

  • Amtrak Station, 100 S. French St, Wilmington, DE 19801
    Monday - Friday 6 AM - 6 PM
    Saturday - 8:00 AM - 12:30 PM
  • Market Street Mall, 718 N. Market St, Wilmington, DE 19801
    Monday - Friday 9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
  • Newark Train Station, 10 Mopar Dr, Newark, DE 19713
    Monday - Friday 6:00 AM - 10:00 AM
  • Information Center, 119 Lower Beech St. Ste. 100, Wilmington, DE 19805
    Monday - Friday 8 AM to 4:30 PM
  • Receptionist Desk, 900 Public Safety Blvd., Dover, DE 19901
    Monday - Friday 8 AM to 4:30 PM
  • Rehoboth Park-n-Ride, Country Club Road, Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971
    May to September 24 hours 7 days a week.
  • Extended Weekend Service 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM

The bus driver also will give you a "Daily Pass" so that you can ride all day and have the ability to get a replacement DARTCard at any of the above DART First State Transportation Stores.

Q: My card was destroyed when I tried to get it from the farebox, what do I do?
A: If your DARTCard gets mutilated or jammed in the fare box, and cannot be retrieved, or if the fare box prints the statement "Remaining Value on next card" at the bottom of the card, but does not issue a "Remaining Value Card," the bus driver issues a "Redemption Voucher." The bus driver will write the date, time, their DTC employee number, and bus number on the voucher, punches the voucher for the type of DARTCard and county, and, if a "Remaining Value Card" was not issued, writes the last value listed on the DARTCard. The bus driver will ask that you return the "Redemption Voucher," which provides three days of travel, to one of DART First State Transportation Stores to obtain another DARTCard.

Please note that customers are asked to wait 24-hours before attempting to redeem a "Redemption Voucher." A 24-hour waiting period is necessary for DART First State to retrieve the DARTCard with exception of a Friday occurrence for which a customer must come in on Tuesday. If a customer comes in before the DARTCard has been collected they are instructed to return at another time. If necessary, a "Daily Pass" for the appropriate County will be provided to the customer.

Q: What do I do if I accidentally place my DARTCard in the dollar bill slot?
A: If you mistakenly places your DARTCard in the fare box dollar bill slot, and if the bus driver can see the value on the DARTCard, you may ride free for that one trip only. If the value on the card cannot be seen, the customer must pay for their trip by another means. As this is a customer error, no "Daily Pass" or "Redemption Voucher" can be issued.

The bus driver also informs the customer to contact DART First State Customer Service or Relations as DARTCards can be sorted out of the fare box's money bin at the end of the day, and if found, can be returned to customer.

Q: I had some remaining value left on my card but the farebox won't take it, what do I do?
A: When the back of an existing DARTCard becomes full with your trip information you must wait by the fare box for an additional "Remaining Value Card" to be issued. Once you leave the bus without the "Remaining Value Card," DART First State is not responsible for providing a replacement "Remaining Value Card."

If a bus driver finds a "Remaining Value Card," the bus driver will notify the riders on the bus that a "Remaining Value Card" was left in the farebox. The customer to whom the card belongs must then come forth and show their existing DARTCard. The DARTCard having the "Remaining Value on the next card" statement must have a last value, a day of the month to the left of that value that is the same as that day's date, and a serial number that all match what is displayed on the "Remaining Value Card." With this match the bus driver will then return the "Remaining Value Card" to the customer.

If the "Remaining Value Card" is unclaimed by any rider, the bus driver will turn it in to the DART First State Transportation Stores' Supervisor who will hold the "Remaining Value Card" for customer retrieval within 30 days or ultimate disposal.

Again, DART First State is not responsible for providing a "Remaining Value Card" once the customer has walked away from the farebox unless the farebox failed to issue a "Remaining Value Card" at which point the bus driver will issue a "Redemption Voucher." However, if a "Remaining Value Card" has been turned in by a bus driver and matches a customer's DARTCard with the same last value, date for the day of the month and serial number that "Remaining Value Card" will be returned to the customer. A courtesy of a one-time redemption "Remaining Value Card" will be considered.

DART First State Store Representatives will ask for photo identification and record the customer's name, address, phone number, date, time and bus route of occurrence when providing a replacement "Remaining Value Card" or DARTCard.

DARTCard problems happen and it's our goal to make things right for our Customers.

You're smart to ride transit, and even smarter to be saving money and time by paying your fare with our DARTCards!