After 20 years of using MetroCards, the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) unveiled the ability for subway riders to tap their phone, smart card, or even a debit card to ride the subway.
This transition has forced banks around the country to quickly update cards. New York subway riders will be able to use tap-to-pay credit and debit cards or mobile payments at stations along the 4-5-6 line between Grand Central and Barclays Center beginning on May 31.
“Mass transit is a really terrific use case for tap and pay -- people commute 10 times a week,” Visa Chief Executive Officer Al Kelly said in a Bloomberg Television interview. “It gets them in the habit of using the card to tap and go.”
The move to tap-to-pay will boost profits by $2.4 billion by transitioning to contactless cards and replacing cash transactions, researchers at A.T. Kearney led by Monica Gabel said in a report last year. Not only will the banks profits, but subway riders will save time and frustration by avoiding lines to refill their MetroCards.
There is a still work to be done, 40% of payment terminals in the United States are not contactless. However, the new smart card system is aiming to come to the underground scene in 2021.
Will you miss MetroCards?