MTA expands OMNY to Reduced-Fare customers

Posted: 27 October 2022 | | No comments yet

In line with its commitment to improve access to transportation, MTA’s expansion of OMNY will provide Reduced-Fare customers with more choice on how to pay for their public transit journeys.

MTA extends OMNY to Reduced-Fare customers

Credit: Metropolitan Transport Authority

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) has announced that Reduced-Fare customers can now put their reduced fare benefit on any personal payment device compatible with OMNY, becoming the first major transit system to offer reduced fares on personal payment devices.

Now, seniors and people with disabilities who qualify for Reduced-Fare will now have more choice on how to pay their fare on public transit. MTA is enabling customers to make this switch online, anytime from anywhere, in three easy steps. 

Ahead of this systemwide launch, MTA has successfully conducted a multi-month soft launch, in which several hundred reduced-fare customers switched from MetroCard to OMNY online and used OMNY on subways and buses. MTA solicited feedback from these customers to develop customer resources and instruct call centre staff to ensure riders have a seamless transition to OMNY. 

“Every day, the MTA is proud to help over one million seniors, disabled riders and other Reduced-Fare customers get around New York City,” said MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber. “As we continue to see more and more customers use OMNY, today (24 October) is a major milestone towards a full transition to the easy, contactless system.” 

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By using a contactless card or smart device, Reduced-Fare riders benefit from increased accessibility to the transit system in a variety of ways. Customers will no longer need to track a card that must be replaced upon expiration nor pre-load value onto a MetroCard. OMNY also gives Reduced-Fare customers the opportunity to benefit from the MTA’s ongoing ‘Lucky 13’ fare capping programme, where customers ride free after 12 paid OMNY taps in a week, from Monday to Sunday. 

“Many New Yorkers with disabilities rely on Reduced-Fare when accessing mass transit to get around the city,” said MTA Chief Accessibility Officer and Senior Advisor Quemuel Arroyo. “By enabling Reduced-Fare customers to make the switch to OMNY, we are making riding our transit system quicker and easier for all riders with the tap of their phone or contactless card.” 

“Reduced-Fare MetroCards can take a long time to acquire and replace, an issue that became even more urgent to address during COVID,” said Advisory Committee for Transit Accessibility (ACTA) Chair Jessica Murray. “We hope that by prioritising disabled people and older people, the next phase of the OMNY transition for students, paratransit riders, commuter rail passengers and other special fare programmes will be more accessible.”