November of 1979 the Helena Area Transit Service (later referred to as H.A.T.S.) was incorporated by the City of Helena, and deemed a public transportation bus system. Prior to this H.A.T.S. was part of the private sector and was managed by Bill Emge. While under private management there were only 2 buses and neither were wheelchair lift equipped, and had no 2 way radios. Calls were dispatched by telephone or the driver had to stop into the office to get the assignment.
HATS operation is Monday through Friday excluding weekends and holidays. We offer a Checkpoint Fixed Route bus, an East Valley Deviated Fixed/ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Para Transit Service bus, and a city wide ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Para Transit Service bus. Please refer to Applications and Policies; you must completely fill out the Transit Functional Needs Evaluation for ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Para Transit Service application, and be approved to ride these bus services.
The ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Para Transit Service bus starts at 6:30 AM and ends at 5:30 PM. Please refer to the ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Paratransit Service Policies and Procedures.
The Check Point Bus is a set route bus with 21 stops. No call in is required. The Check Point runs every 75 minutes starting at 7 AM with the last run beginning at 5 PM and ending at the HATS office at 6:00 PM.
The East Valley Bus is a deviated fixed ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Para Transit Service bus that services the East Valley, Eastgate, and East Helena with set stops at East Helena City Hall, East Helena Library, in Helena at Pre Release, Wal-Mart, HATS office, all other stops listed on the route are “call in”.
To be picked up at any of the “call in” stops you have to call HATS dispatch to schedule your ride. The East Valley Bus will connect with the Checkpoint Bus, for travel within Helena, refer to Checkpoint Schedule.
Any stop that is not shown as a fixed stop or is not listed as a “call in” stop; does require an approved application for the East Valley Deviated Fixed/ADA Complementary Curb-to-Curb/Para Transit Service bus. Refer; Applications and Policies.
The East Valley Bus operates from 7:00 AM to 11: 00 AM and again 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday with the last run leaving Helena at 4:00 PM. We request scheduling for next day service. Same day rides will be subject to availability.
Inter City Bus For further information and bus schedules, please contact the Agent at 447-8078 during business hours; non-business hours contact the Butte office at 406-723-3288.
Salt Lake City Express Ticket Agent’s hours are:
Monday through Saturday 3:00 pm to 8:30pm
Sunday 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm
Holidays 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm (please call prior to the Holiday to confirm business hours)