MTA begins rollout of 'tap-and-go' fare payment system

Posted: Updated:
MANHATTAN -

The MTA is rolling out 'tap-and-go' fare payment, the first update in how straphangers can pay for a subway ride in more than 25 years.

MTA leaders unveiled the first phase of the OMNY ticketless system Friday. Instead of buying a ticket in advance, riders can tap their credit card or smartphone on a screen and be on their way.

As of Friday, the technology only works for single-fare tickets at 16 stations on the 4, 5 and 6 line between Grand Central and Atlantic Avenue. It also works on all Staten Island buses.

The new form of paying is expected to hit all subway stations by the end of 2020, and eventually add reloadable tap-and-go cards.

The technology couldn't come soon enough for lifelong New Yorker Cassie Abrams, who says she's often missed trains trying to buy a ticket.

"Just being able to tap my phone and run would be really good," says Abrams.

MTA CEO Andy Byford says successful rollouts for similar technology in London, Sydney and Vancouver bodes well for New York. He also says all data will be encrypted.

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