COVID-19 Updates

Citrus Connection
COVID-19 Updates

What we’re doing to protect you:


Important information you should know

Citrus Connection to return to full service starting May 1

Lakeland — April 29, 2020 – As Governor DeSantis phases in the opening of Florida, Citrus Connection will offer a full schedule of public transit services to Polk County residents starting Friday, May 1.

Since April 6, Citrus Connection has been operating a reduced schedule of service as a result of reduced ridership and driver availability due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

“We commend our front-line staff for keeping essential personnel moving during this unprecedented time,” said Citrus Connection Executive Director Tom Phillips. “There’s a reason transit workers are considered heroes during this pandemic. They bravely answer the call every day to keep Polk County moving safely.”

The 32 fixed routes throughout the county and all paratransit service will resume operating at full staff. Paratransit service was restricted to medical and medical-related service only with grocery trips on Tuesdays. All paratransit clients wishing to book trips are encouraged to contact the Regional Mobility Call Center at (863) 534-5500.

Citrus Connections will continue to operate all service under strict CDC guidelines limiting the number of passengers on buses while emphasizing proper social distancing.

Citrus Connection is adapting its operations in response to COVID-19 and recommends bus riders to obtain additional specific route information by downloading the MyStop Mobile App, follow on Facebook, go to www.ridecitrus.com or call the Quality Assurance Line at (863) 733-4242.

Decrease in ridership and driver availability result in service reductions

Lakeland — April 1, 2020 – In the face of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Citrus Connection has kept buses running within cities and connecting passengers with neighboring communities throughout Polk County.

effort will continue, but will be reduced due to a decrease in ridership and driver availability as result of the COVID-19 crisis. Passengers and operators are electing to self-isolate. Effective Monday, April 6, Citrus Connection will reduce service on select routes.

“These are unprecedented times and we realize that the COVID-19 situation is changing at incredible speed,” said Citrus Connection Executive Director Tom Phillips “We are seeing operators choosing to self-isolate, ridership decline related to school and business closures, telecommuting, and social distancing.”

Citrus Connection is adapting its operations in response to COVID-19 and recommends bus riders to obtain additional specific route information by downloading the MyStop Mobile App, follow on Facebook, go to www.ridecitrus.com or call the Quality Assurance Line at (863) 733-4242.

Planning a trip to the park, make other plans

Lakeland — March 24, 2020 – Citrus Connection would like to remind passengers who are planning to travel to parks and recreation facilities in Polk County, the City of Lakeland, and Winter Haven, make other plans as parks have been closed to curb the spread of COVID-19.

County officials closed all parks and natural resource facilities until further notice. This includes pa

rks with playgrounds and recreational leagues, environmental lands and trails such as Fort Frasier, campgrounds, dog parks, the shooting range, History Center, Circle B Bar Reserve, Bone Valley ATV Park, Homeland Heritage Park and our resource centers.

The City of Lakeland made the decision to close additional park facilities in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus. The following park spaces were closed at dusk Monday, March 23rd until March 30th or until further notice:

– Gated park spaces and gated trails

– Parks spaces with picnic pavilions, playgrounds and/or bathrooms

– Cleveland Heights Golf Course, including parking lots

– All tennis and pickleball courts

– All basketball courts

– All dog parks

– All boat ramps

City of Winter Haven has suspended all athletic activities, special events, classes and city facility rentals now through May 9. Indoor recreation facilities are closed until further notice.  This includes the Senior Adult Center; Winter Haven Public Library; AdventHealth Fieldhouse; Winter Haven Recreational and Cultural Center; and outdoor gathering facilities including Rowdy Gaines Olympic Pool, Winter Haven Tennis Center, Diamondplex, and the Splash Pad at Trailhead Park.

For more information about Citrus Connection services, visit the website at www.ridecitrus.com. Additional information can be obtained by calling Quality Assurance at (863) 733-4242.

Citrus Connection closing

Customer Service sites March 23

Lakeland — March 18, 2020 – Effective Monday, March 23, Citrus Connection will close all pass sales customer service locations for the health and safety of customers and employees.

Fixed Route passengers will have the options of using traditional cash or the new mPass mobile app to pay fares. Customers, who fall under a Universal Access Program will continue to use that method to board buses.

Paratransit passengers will use existing tickets. When those tickets are exhausted, a list will be created and clients will settle accounts after the event has passed.

For more information about Citrus Connection services, visit the website at www.ridecitrus.com. Additional information can be obtained by calling Quality Assurance at (863) 733-4242.

Citrus Connection and Polk County Schools expand COLTS program to assist local families

Lakeland — March 16, 2020 – Citrus Connection and Polk County Schools have partnered to provide students eight years of age and older free public transportation until further notice to assist families with a reduced cost for local travel during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Citrus Connection and PCS have a long-standing partnership to provide transportation through the Community of Learning Transportation Services (COLTS) Program that continues to supply subsidized public transit for high school students. The district and Citrus Connection have agreed to open the service to children eight years of age and older.

Parents/Guardians of student riders under the age of seven traveling to a meal site will also be able ride at no charge.

In the midst of the Covid-19 public health crisis, Citrus Connection will continue to provide public transit service on all routes and will follow the guidelines of the Florida Department of Transportation. If FDOT calls for the suspension or reduction in service, we will honor that order.

For more information about Citrus Connection services, visit the website at www.ridecitrus.com. Additional information can be obtained by calling customer service at (863) 688-7433 or quality assurance at (863) 733-4242.

Grocery trips added to condensed

Door-to-Door/Paratransit service

Lakeland — March 16, 2020 – Citrus Connection is updating its Door-to-Door/Paratransit trip criteria to include medical, medical-related and grocery trips only. The limitation to those three types of trips will best assist in combatting the possible spread of Covid-19.

Medical, medical-related and grocery trips can be scheduled for any day this week. Effective the week of March 23, grocery trips will only be available on Tuesdays. The trip limitations will remain in place until April 15.

Anyone wishing to schedule medical, medical-related and grocery trips can continue to do so by calling the Regional Mobility Call Center at (863) 534-5500. Citrus Connection will honor already scheduled non-medical trips.