Recently I have been taking the public transit a lot in areas that stretch across multiple zoning fares. Therefore, the trip can be more expensive. Sometimes what I do actually to save money with time permitting is I actually get off at stations just before the zone change and then walk to my destination which may be a fifteen minute walk in total. You get some exercise and save a dollar or so which can add up if you do it everyday for the year.
But another thing I have been doing is taking advantage of the discounted fare times. In this area, after 6:30pm the entire system is considered as one zone so it will be cheaper than the peak periods. I often found myself ready to leave at about 5:50 which would be outside of that discounted time.
So what I have been doing is finding things to do such as potentially grocery shopping while waiting for the discounted rate. This really adds up where each day I save about $1.50 or more by doing this. I could easily buy a bunch of groceries by the end of the month with those savings too.
The important thing is to not just sit there and wait the clock out as you could argue you are losing more money that way in time. But if you can find actual things you need to get done to take advantage of discounted travel rates the savings can really add up.