CAT 101: How to Ride the CAT Buses

To check out our "How to Ride" videos click here.
To download a PDF of our full route map click here.

 Reading the Route Maps:

Reading the Route Maps:

  • A bus time schedule is listed on the right hand side of the map.
  • Major destinations are printed on the top of the schedule and right underneath is a letter in a circle which match up with the letters on the map. These are the estimated times that the bus will be at that location.
  • If you are at a location between timing points, be at the location at the same time as the earlier of the two timing points.
  • Buses will not stop in yellow highlighted areas on the map except at the "stop permitted" zone indicated by a yellow hand in a red stop sign.
  • Buses do not stop at the timing points unless a rider is waving to get on the bus. The only designated stops are located at Front Avenue, Gateway Mall, Bismarck State College, and Dan's in Mandan.
  • Allow yourself an extra five minutes to ensure you do not miss the bus. CAT buses run on satellite (cell phone) time.

 Waiting for the Bus:

Waiting for the Bus:

  • CAT buses will stop on any corner along a bus route as long as the operator believes it is a safe place to stop.
  • Buses cannot stop in right turn lanes.
  • Wave to make sure the operator can see you as the bus approaches.
  • Stand back from the curb until the bus comes to a stop.
  • When the door opens, carefully board the bus.

 Identifying the Correct Bus:

Identifying the Correct Bus:

  • Check the destination signs and route number before boarding the bus or ask the operator what the destination is before you pay your fare.
  • Destination signs are located along the front of the bus and near the top of the bus by the front door.

Getting off the Bus:

Getting off the Bus:

  • If you want to stop along the route, pull the cord about a half block before your destination.
  • The operator will stop at the next safe corner or at the next safe stop zone on highlighted routes.
  • Please remain seated until the bus comes to a complete stop.
  • Exit through the front door and wait until the bus is gone before crossing the street.
  • If it is your first time riding, let the operator know your destination and he or she will help you get there.

 Transfers:

Transfers:

  • You may need to transfer between buses to get to your final destination.
  • Transfers are free between CAT buses.
  • There are four transfer points indicated with yellow stars on the route map: Front Avenue, Gateway Mall, Bismarck State College, and Dan's Supermarket in Mandan.
  • Notify your operator when you board your first bus. He or she will give you a transfer slip when you exit the bus.
  • You need to get on the next bus at your transfer location.
  • Most transfers will be immediate, but some can take longer.
  • Monthly passholders and those that qualify for free fare don’t need transfer slips, but should still notify the driver if the are going to be transferring, especially during winter months.

For Assistance With Mapping Out A Route:

If you need assistance with planning your ride, please click here to use The CAT Trip Planner.

 SAFETY and COURTESY on the CAT:

SAFETY and COURTESY on the CAT:

  • Keep arms, legs, packages, and other personal items out of the aisles.
  • Do not stand in the stairwells.
  • No eating, no drinking, and no open containers on the bus.
  • No smoking.
  • No radios without earphones.
  • No vulgar, threatening, or offensive language (you will be asked to leave the bus).
  • No rollerblades or in-line skates can be worn on the bus.
  • No animals are allowed on the buses except service animals.
  • Please limit yourself to packages that can be easily carried and stored next to you on the bus.
  • Strollers must be folded and stored out of the aisle.
  • Please refrain from carrying on a conversation with the operator while the bus is in motion.
  • Dangerous weapons are prohibited on CAT buses.

Lost and Found:

  • When exiting the bus, make sure you take all your personal belongings with you.
  • If you forget an item, please contact The CAT at 323-9228 (9CAT).