Transit

What to Do When You Lose Something on the TTC

Transit

What to Do When You Lose Something on the TTC

Have you ever hopped on the TTC or GO Transit, checked your pockets and realized you lost your PRESTO card, keys or even your wallet? It happens to the best of us. Before you chase down the streetcar or jump in an Uber and tell the driver to “follow that bus!”, take a deep breath. There are actually some pretty specific protocols that Toronto Transit has put in place to help you recover lost items. 

The first step you should take when you lose something on the TTC 

Believe it or not, people lose things on the TTC all the time. And here’s an even bigger shocker: good people are commuting in Toronto who actually return the things they find. And they have to be able to return it somewhere. Guess what? There’s an office for that – a Lost Articles Office, which might sound like something out of a Harry Potter novel, but it’s fully muggle.

Here’s what you need to know about retrieving an item from the Lost Articles Office: 

  • Call before you arrive to confirm your lost item at 416-393-4100. 
  • Call between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. 
  • Pick up lost items at the office located inside of Bay Station, which is at Bay and Bloor. 
  • Lost item pickup is between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. 

Protocols are currently in place due to the pandemic, so note the following: Avoid visiting the Lost Articles Office unless you have called and confirmed that they have your item. Only one customer is permitted into the vestibule of the Lost Articles Office at a time. You will be expected to line up outside the door, and can only enter if the vestibule is empty.

Oh, and one more thing: they’re usually dealing with about 4,000 lost items at any given time – so be nice! 

What if your lost article isn’t claimed? 

Nothing lasts forever, folks, so don’t expect the TTC to act as a free storage locker. If you don’t claim your lost item within 60 days, the TTC will either sell it at auction or donate the item. In some cases, they might just throw whatever you lost in the trash, so unless you’re ready to go dumpster diving, we suggest you make your way to Bay Station. 

What happens if you lose something on the GO Train? 

You might be able to catch up to a streetcar, but there’s no way you’re outrunning a GO train. Fortunately, they have some protocols, too, and an office if you ever lose a cell phone, a shoe or even a nose ring. That office should be your first step, except you won’t be making a call. You’ll need to fill out an online Lost and Found Form, and if luck is on your side, you’ll get a call to go pick up your item. 

You’ll have to travel down to Union Station to pick it up, but you just bought that cell phone case and it was the last one in your favourite colour – so it’s totally worth it. You’ll need proof that the item is yours. Giving the password for the laptop or phone number for your lost cell phone usually works. Some kind of description of the item can also be proof enough. 

The GO train is a bit more strict about how long they keep your stuff. You only have 30 days to claim whatever you lost before it gets donated, dismantled, or sold at a United Way auction. If you lose something that’s more valuable than your work mug or that umbrella you borrowed from your partner and never gave back, they will hold it for longer than 30 days. Remember that if you were just passing through the city and can’t make it back down to Union Station, you can send someone on your behalf. 

Tips to avoid losing your stuff on the Toronto Transit 

We get it. Sometimes things just happen. But a little prevention can go a long way. Here are some basic tips to reduce your chances of losing your stuff or increase your chances of getting it back. 

  • Write your name and phone number on your PRESTO card, phone case or wallet.
  • Do a quick body, seat, and floor check to make sure you have everything before stepping off the bus, train, or streetcar. 
  • Avoid putting smaller objects on your lap like gloves or hats. They don’t make noise when they fall. 
  • If you find someone else’s stuff, don’t be that person. Do the right thing and bring it to the lost and found.

Have you ever hopped on the TTC or GO Transit, checked your pockets and realized you lost your PRESTO card, keys or even your wallet? It happens to the best of us. Before you chase down the streetcar or jump in an Uber and tell the driver to “follow that bus!”, take a deep breath. There are actually some pretty specific protocols that Toronto Transit has put in place to help you recover lost items. 

The first step you should take when you lose something on the TTC 

Believe it or not, people lose things on the TTC all the time. And here’s an even bigger shocker: good people are commuting in Toronto who actually return the things they find. And they have to be able to return it somewhere. Guess what? There’s an office for that – a Lost Articles Office, which might sound like something out of a Harry Potter novel, but it’s fully muggle.

Here’s what you need to know about retrieving an item from the Lost Articles Office: 

  • Call before you arrive to confirm your lost item at 416-393-4100. 
  • Call between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. 
  • Pick up lost items at the office located inside of Bay Station, which is at Bay and Bloor. 
  • Lost item pickup is between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. 

Protocols are currently in place due to the pandemic, so note the following: Avoid visiting the Lost Articles Office unless you have called and confirmed that they have your item. Only one customer is permitted into the vestibule of the Lost Articles Office at a time. You will be expected to line up outside the door, and can only enter if the vestibule is empty.

Oh, and one more thing: they’re usually dealing with about 4,000 lost items at any given time – so be nice! 

What if your lost article isn’t claimed? 

Nothing lasts forever, folks, so don’t expect the TTC to act as a free storage locker. If you don’t claim your lost item within 60 days, the TTC will either sell it at auction or donate the item. In some cases, they might just throw whatever you lost in the trash, so unless you’re ready to go dumpster diving, we suggest you make your way to Bay Station. 

What happens if you lose something on the GO Train? 

You might be able to catch up to a streetcar, but there’s no way you’re outrunning a GO train. Fortunately, they have some protocols, too, and an office if you ever lose a cell phone, a shoe or even a nose ring. That office should be your first step, except you won’t be making a call. You’ll need to fill out an online Lost and Found Form, and if luck is on your side, you’ll get a call to go pick up your item. 

You’ll have to travel down to Union Station to pick it up, but you just bought that cell phone case and it was the last one in your favourite colour – so it’s totally worth it. You’ll need proof that the item is yours. Giving the password for the laptop or phone number for your lost cell phone usually works. Some kind of description of the item can also be proof enough. 

The GO train is a bit more strict about how long they keep your stuff. You only have 30 days to claim whatever you lost before it gets donated, dismantled, or sold at a United Way auction. If you lose something that’s more valuable than your work mug or that umbrella you borrowed from your partner and never gave back, they will hold it for longer than 30 days. Remember that if you were just passing through the city and can’t make it back down to Union Station, you can send someone on your behalf. 

Tips to avoid losing your stuff on the Toronto Transit 

We get it. Sometimes things just happen. But a little prevention can go a long way. Here are some basic tips to reduce your chances of losing your stuff or increase your chances of getting it back. 

  • Write your name and phone number on your PRESTO card, phone case or wallet.
  • Do a quick body, seat, and floor check to make sure you have everything before stepping off the bus, train, or streetcar. 
  • Avoid putting smaller objects on your lap like gloves or hats. They don’t make noise when they fall. 
  • If you find someone else’s stuff, don’t be that person. Do the right thing and bring it to the lost and found.

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This article offers general information only and is not intended as legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. While the information presented is believed to be factual and current, its accuracy is not guaranteed and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author(s) as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or its affiliates.

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