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kaixo

Metrocard Math! Best card to buy after the fare hike

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This is a good article I found which breaks down what is the best Metrocard to buy after the recent fare hike:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/1958338/the_new_subway_math_the_best_new_york.html

 

I found the article as I was searching like crazy to figure out how much I should be putting on my card without having all that leftover change or over paying for a monthly or weekly.

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This is a good article I found which breaks down what is the best Metrocard to buy after the recent fare hike:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/1958338/the_new_subway_math_the_best_new_york.html

 

I found the article as I was searching like crazy to figure out how much I should be putting on my card without having all that leftover change or over paying for a monthly or weekly.

 

I just hate articles like this that purport to show the (MTA) stealing loose change from the customers.

 

It does not matter that since bonus amounts were reduced to 15%, only very specific amounts loaded onto cards will provide an exact number of rides (with $0.00 left over). If you have, say, $2.05 left over, just search in your pockets for 20 cents (dimes, nickels or a quarter). Go to a MetroCard vending machine. Choose "Refill your card", insert your card and press "Other Amounts". Manually insert $0.20 and press OK. Feed the coins in. Once 20 cents have been paid, your card will have a full ride on it. (If you inserted a quarter, the machine will give you back a nickel).

 

If you have a card with less than exact number of rides remaining, and you want to round to an exact number, it's still not all that difficult. Two rides=$4.50, therefore 4 rides=$9.00 and any multiple of 4 rides is a multiple of nine (I am sure you learnt multiplication tables in school). Say you want to load six rides, you will need (4 rides + 2 rides= $9.00 +$4.50=$13.50). If you already have, say $2.00 on your card, you will need another $11.50. This time, just press the "$10" option; you will get a 15 percent bonus, plus the balance on your card, the total amounting to $13.50. Thus, you will end up with 6 rides. (If you had any amount over $2.00, then you will have an excess balance).

 

 

The fact is, if you travel a lot, an Unlimited MetroCard makes a lot of sense. Since you know a 30-Day card is $89, along with a 15% bonus, an $89 pay-per-ride card would get you $102.35, or, 45.48 rides (including free transfers). If you make 46 or more trips in a 30-Day period, you are better off with an Unlimited card. That's 23 round trips. If you only use your card to get to work/school roughly 20 days a month, then don't get an Unlimited card. If you use it multiple times a day, or on weekends (e.g. to go shopping or to a park, etc), then an Unlimited card is a worthwhile buy.

 

The fact that many refills will leave you with amounts corresponding to an inexact number of rides is not the MTA's fault. You are supposed to refill and use pay-per-ride Metrocards until their expiry date. If you are one of the millions who throw away cards with anything between 5 cents and $2.00 on it, littering the stations and throwing away your money, that really shows it is you who are being irresponsible and foolish. Why people must hanker on receiving exact numbers of rides (unless they are soon going to leave NYC) always puzzles me. And, like I said, you can always use the "other amounts" option to refill exact amounts, rounded to an exact number of rides (just do your math at home, if you are no good at mental arithmetic).

 

(The other amounts option does give you 15% bonuses for amounts over $8.00, so the MTA isn't robbing you by requiring you to add specific amounts if you insist, pointlessly, on having exact multiples of $2.25 on your card. Secondly, if you are leaving town, and have some rides left over, you can give or sell your card to a friend (far as I know, selling a card is not illegal), or just return it to the MTA and ask for a refund (station agents have pre-printed envelopes for that)).

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Save yourself from all the math.

 

http://www.metrocardbonuscalculator.com/

 

Handy tool, but why bother? If you only need to make a single round trip with no travel plans for the next few days, just get a card for $4.50 (use Other Amounts option on MVM or ask a station agent).

 

If you are planning intermittent travel over the next few days, just add one of the pre-set values (e.g. $10, $20, etc) and use the card until there is less than one ride left. Either keep refilling as before, or, if you intend to not use the subway/bus for a while (or get an Unlimited card instead), top up to $2.25 using the other amounts option.

 

Keep refilling your pay-per-ride MetroCard until it has less than 28 days to its expiry date. Then, either trade it in (balance preserved) for a new card with extended validity (cards bought now are valid till 09/31/2010) or top up to an exact number of rides and then throw it away after use.

 

If you have a credit/debit card(s), apply for an EasyPay Express Metrocard that is linked to your credit/debit card. This allows you to easily refill and reuse the same card until its expiry date (upon which MTA mails you a new card). It also allows you to switch between pay-per-ride and Unlimited formats to match your commuting patterns.

 

I am not a spokesperson for the (MTA) or anything, but it always saddens me at the great waste of MetroCards that I see as a result of people throwing away perfectly good cards. If you didn't get into the habit of throwing away your cards, you wouldn't worry about getting an exact number of rides. The fact that some people throw away cards WITH MONEY on them, because they didn't get an exact multiple of $2.25 (itself easily attainable by using an MVM as I described) is just depressing.

Edited by MAA89

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Maybe a dumb question, but is a PPR Metrocard good for both PATH ($1.75) and the subway/bus ($2.25)? I.E. Can you swipe it at a PATH turnstile, ride to Manhattan, then swipe it to enter the subway or board a bus (and the reverse)?

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So, if a PATH/subway rider bought an $8.00 PPR Metrocard ($9.20 with 15% bonus?) and used it for two PATH rides ($3.50) and two subway rides ($4.50), the rider would have a balance of $1.20 as opposed to 20 cents for four subway rides?

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Here's a novel idea: Get rid of the bonuses for Pay Per Rides. Pay for what you're gonna use and that's it. Minimum Metrocard purchase = a $15 card. Want to refill? Gotta bring it back to at least $15. Costs $1 every time you get a new card. Metrocards never expire.

 

Problem solved.

 

Can't afford the $15 minimum? Buy SingleRides. Buy a Fun Pass.

 

Why make people feel like they're getting something for nothing when they're not? This bankster finance mentality has got to go. Most systems don't provide subway to bus and bus to subway transfers, ours does. All this b****ing about how fares reconcile out because of a BONUS that people shouldn't even really feel entitled (there's that F-ing word again) to anyway...

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To those riders, quit the whining and keep refilling that pay per ride MetroCard and keep using it until it expires.

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To those riders, quit the whining and keep refilling that pay per ride MetroCard and keep using it until it expires.

 

Or just take the left over amounts and combine them into one card.

The bonuses encourages people to buy higher $ amount.

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Maybe a dumb question, but is a PPR Metrocard good for both PATH ($1.75) and the subway/bus ($2.25)? I.E. Can you swipe it at a PATH turnstile, ride to Manhattan, then swipe it to enter the subway or board a bus (and the reverse)?

 

Yes.

 

Do the easypay PPR cards also work on PATH, the tram, and Airtrain?

 

Yes.

 

PATH and AirTrain only accepts PPR MetroCard (EasyPay included). Roosevelt Island Tramway also accepts Unlimited Ride MetroCard. Westchester Bee-Line Bus System also accepts both PPR and Unlimiteds.

 

AirTrain also accepts a AirTrain 10-trip MetroCard costing $25, or half of the usual fare of $5. I have heard of a Unlimited 30-Day AirTrain Metrocard for the AirTrain, but I am not sure about it (supposedly costs $40).

Edited by MAA89

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Here's a novel idea: Get rid of the bonuses for Pay Per Rides. Pay for what you're gonna use and that's it. Minimum Metrocard purchase = a $15 card. Want to refill? Gotta bring it back to at least $15. Costs $1 every time you get a new card. Metrocards never expire.

 

Problem solved.

 

Can't afford the $15 minimum? Buy SingleRides. Buy a Fun Pass.

 

Why make people feel like they're getting something for nothing when they're not? This bankster finance mentality has got to go. Most systems don't provide subway to bus and bus to subway transfers, ours does. All this b****ing about how fares reconcile out because of a BONUS that people shouldn't even really feel entitled (there's that F-ing word again) to anyway...

 

Firstly, it is not fair to impose minimum purchase amounts, especially for infrequent users/tourists who may not need as many as the 7 rides or so that $15 would provide.

 

Secondly, forcing people to use SingleRide tickets for infrequent travel/when money is short will great exacerbate the littering problem, especially since there isn't even a bus transfer possible with one (and no way for a card reader to retain the ticket).

 

Fun Passes cost $8.25 already and it is possible that someone who cannot afford to buy a $15 card cannot afford a Fun Pass either. In any case, it is only valid for a day and would require at least 5 rides to be profitable over a PPR card of the same value.

 

Lastly, if the (MTA) is willing to give me a Bonus, I am definitely not going to refuse it. Just because some dumb people cringe at the thought of having non-whole numbers of rides on their cards doesn't mean the (MTA) should do away with bonuses.

 

The (MTA) or anyone else should not dictate what pre-determined amounts of money I should load on a MetroCard. There is an "Other Amounts" option on the Refill screen at MVMs for a reason.

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Firstly, it is not fair to impose minimum purchase amounts, especially for infrequent users/tourists who may not need as many as the 7 rides or so that $15 would provide.

 

Secondly, forcing people to use SingleRide tickets for infrequent travel/when money is short will great exacerbate the littering problem, especially since there isn't even a bus transfer possible with one (and no way for a card reader to retain the ticket).

 

Fun Passes cost $8.25 already and it is possible that someone who cannot afford to buy a $15 card cannot afford a Fun Pass either. In any case, it is only valid for a day and would require at least 5 rides to be profitable over a PPR card of the same value.

 

Lastly, if the (MTA) is willing to give me a Bonus, I am definitely not going to refuse it. Just because some dumb people cringe at the thought of having non-whole numbers of rides on their cards doesn't mean the (MTA) should do away with bonuses.

 

The (MTA) or anyone else should not dictate what pre-determined amounts of money I should load on a MetroCard. There is an "Other Amounts" option on the Refill screen at MVMs for a reason.

 

:tup:

 

End of story.

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Firstly, it is not fair to impose minimum purchase amounts, especially for infrequent users/tourists who may not need as many as the 7 rides or so that $15 would provide.

 

Secondly, forcing people to use SingleRide tickets for infrequent travel/when money is short will great exacerbate the littering problem, especially since there isn't even a bus transfer possible with one (and no way for a card reader to retain the ticket).

 

Fun Passes cost $8.25 already and it is possible that someone who cannot afford to buy a $15 card cannot afford a Fun Pass either. In any case, it is only valid for a day and would require at least 5 rides to be profitable over a PPR card of the same value.

 

Lastly, if the (MTA) is willing to give me a Bonus, I am definitely not going to refuse it. Just because some dumb people cringe at the thought of having non-whole numbers of rides on their cards doesn't mean the (MTA) should do away with bonuses.

 

The (MTA) or anyone else should not dictate what pre-determined amounts of money I should load on a MetroCard. There is an "Other Amounts" option on the Refill screen at MVMs for a reason.

 

Well all I have to say is tough crap. If you're a tourist, I don't care, nor does NYC. People who are tourists are not going to cancel their trip to NYC over subway fares so why cater to them. Many systems charge a higher fare to pay without the designated medium, for instance the Boston T will charge a person more if they pay without using a CharlieCard. Tourist goes to Boston and doesn't want to get a CharlieCard? Tough noogies, deal with it and pay more.

 

And the $15 would be a minimum, it would not be required. If you want to put money on a card, the resulting balance has to be at least $15. With cards that never expire, that shouldn't be any kind of a problem. Have a card and don't want to go back to $15? Fine, no problem. Run your card down to zero and be done with it. No one's telling you otherwise.

 

Worried about waste with increased single rides? Make them from recycled and recyclable paper (except for the magnetic strip obviously). Most people will get the PPR because it will be a better deal, more will get unlimited ride cards.

 

Fine, if you think that's too radical we agree to disagree but there is STILL no reason for the bonus.

 

The bonus should go away because there is no reason for it and there has not been for over 6 years. Fares go up and up and yet something as simple as doing away with this retarded "bonus" won't happen...because of a self-entitled "i deserve something extra" mentality by many in this city and the financiers in charge of these decisions at the MTA who cave to this pressure. The bonus system began as an "incentive" dating back to the days of tokens to get people to TRY the Metrocard system when it was not universally required as a form of entry into the subway/buses - that time is now OVER. Look it up...the bonus system started in the late 1990's before systemwide mandate of Metrocard use.

 

The only reason it's still around is people "got comfortable" and feel entitled like the smug selfish pricks that many of them are, and because of that they think it is their god given right to get a bonus on their Metrocard when they refill it. Not only that, they think it is their god given right that the bonus be a round number easily trackable, and if it's not, then they are pissed that they can't keep their quote-unquote "earned" money and have to lose it off their cards (even though they can see an S/A, but then they are giving up their god given time to do so). The whiny narcissistic article complaining about the new bonus system are proof positive of everything I just said.

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They should change the preset amounts to add up correctly to the new fares

 

Preset amounts are simply there as a convenience, especially if you are in a hurry and just want to stick a $10 bill in without worrying about finding change or collecting the $1 coins that come out of the machine. There is no need to change the preset values, 90% of the time I reload a PPR Metrocard (actually fairly rare since I mostly use Unlimiteds), I use the Other Amounts option and choose exactly how much I want to load.

 

Well all I have to say is tough crap. If you're a tourist, I don't care, nor does NYC. People who are tourists are not going to cancel their trip to NYC over subway fares so why cater to them. Many systems charge a higher fare to pay without the designated medium, for instance the Boston T will charge a person more if they pay without using a CharlieCard. Tourist goes to Boston and doesn't want to get a CharlieCard? Tough noogies, deal with it and pay more.

 

I know all about Boston's system; I was there twice in the last month and still have my Charlie Ticket with the "avoid the surcharge, get a Charlie Card" message on it. While I don't care for tourists per se, all I meant is there are infrequent subway users for whom your plan doesn't work (and there are many people who do care about tourists since their jobs depend upon them; so we cannot afford to scare them away with complicated plans. Chances are most buy Fun Passes but only use it for one or two rides anyway).

 

And the $15 would be a minimum, it would not be required. If you want to put money on a card, the resulting balance has to be at least $15. With cards that never expire, that shouldn't be any kind of a problem. Have a card and don't want to go back to $15? Fine, no problem. Run your card down to zero and be done with it. No one's telling you otherwise.

 

Makes no difference. If I suddenly find I have less than $2.25 on my card, I will still need to fill over $13 to cross your $15 minimum, and forcing people to add particular amounts just doesn't work. (I know of no way a Metrocard balance can be transferred to a Single Ride ticket and topped up to a full ride). Like I keep saying, the Other Amounts option is your friend. I have shown many people how to use it and all expressed gratitude.

 

The bonus should go away because there is no reason for it and there has not been for over 6 years. Fares go up and up and yet something as simple as doing away with this retarded "bonus" won't happen...because of a self-entitled "i deserve something extra" mentality by many in this city and the financiers in charge of these decisions at the MTA who cave to this pressure. The bonus system began as an "incentive" dating back to the days of tokens to get people to TRY the Metrocard system when it was not universally required as a form of entry into the subway/buses - that time is now OVER. Look it up...the bonus system started in the late 1990's before systemwide mandate of Metrocard use.

 

The only reason it's still around is people "got comfortable" and feel entitled like the smug selfish pricks that many of them are, and because of that they think it is their god given right to get a bonus on their Metrocard when they refill it. Not only that, they think it is their god given right that the bonus be a round number easily trackable, and if it's not, then they are pissed that they can't keep their quote-unquote "earned" money and have to lose it off their cards (even though they can see an S/A, but then they are giving up their god given time to do so). The whiny narcissistic article complaining about the new bonus system are proof positive of everything I just said.

 

You couldn't really hold this entitlement against riders. Raising fares AND eliminating bonuses would cause many people extreme emotional suffering. The bonus is (MTA)'s way of pacifying the masses.

 

And, bonuses were increased from 10% to 20% after tokens were eliminated, when people would have had no choice but to use MetroCards. If the (MTA) wanted to, they could have eliminated bonuses right there and then. Like I said, if a agency that keeps raising fares offers any kind of concession, grab it with both hands and never let go.

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I know all about Boston's system; I was there twice in the last month and still have my Charlie Ticket with the "avoid the surcharge, get a Charlie Card" message on it. While I don't care for tourists per se, all I meant is there are infrequent subway users for whom your plan doesn't work (and there are many people who do care about tourists since their jobs depend upon them; so we cannot afford to scare them away with complicated plans. Chances are most buy Fun Passes but only use it for one or two rides anyway).

 

Tourists are not going to be "scared away" by anything related to subway payment. If anything, for most of them, the subway system is a complete after thought. If they want to get around they use it...whatever it costs. What I propose will have absolutely no effect on tourism. You hear the tourists. Many of them even talk about how $2.25 is "a good deal" or are surprised to learn that the fare is flat no matter where you go, or that they can transfer from bus to subway or subway to bus.

 

You couldn't really hold this entitlement against riders. Raising fares AND eliminating bonuses would cause many people extreme emotional suffering. The bonus is (MTA)'s way of pacifying the masses.

 

I hold any and all entitlements against everyone. If they eliminated the bonuses, maybe they wouldn't have had to raise the fare so quickly. And if a few extra bucks causes people "extreme emotional suffering" they need to pick up the pieces of their life, quit being a whiny sore loser, and get on with it because there are enough sob stories that are actually deserving of that status, not some person pulling down 85 grand a year plus who's suddenly heartbroken he no longer gets 15% on his Metrocard purchases.

 

And, bonuses were increased from 10% to 20% after tokens were eliminated, when people would have had no choice but to use MetroCards. If the (MTA) wanted to, they could have eliminated bonuses right there and then. Like I said, if a agency that keeps raising fares offers any kind of concession, grab it with both hands and never let go.

 

And that was the mistake right there. Part of effective policy is fixing mistakes as opposed to prolonging them forever because someone did it once. If that was the case, it would still be illegal to drink alcohol, deny voting to women and people of color, and maintain segregation of the races. While they are not comparable in scale to an ill conceived bonus system, the principle behind fixing it is. Like I said, had the bonuses not been there, such a drastic fare hike may not have been necessary. Maybe it goes to 2.10 or 2.15 instead. We won't know for sure but it sure would have helped.

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Tourists are not going to be "scared away" by anything related to subway payment. If anything, for most of them, the subway system is a complete after thought. If they want to get around they use it...whatever it costs. What I propose will have absolutely no effect on tourism. You hear the tourists. Many of them even talk about how $2.25 is "a good deal" or are surprised to learn that the fare is flat no matter where you go, or that they can transfer from bus to subway or subway to bus.

 

I get all that, but what works for tourists doesn't work for the rest of us (most tourists get Fun Passes or 7-Day unlimiteds anyway).

 

Bonuses do not affect me; I travel frequently enough that I am better off with a Unlimited Card. However, I know that a lot of subway riders probably buy Unlimiteds but don't use it as often as it would take to be profitable. They would still rather stick to the Unlimited as the number of rides they can potentially take (e.g. over 50 a month) will leave them in a better situation than PPR users (even with their bonuses). In other words, people are only likely to buy unlimited cards for a loss as long as they foresee potential periods of high transit use, when their "unlimited" cards will leave them at an advantage over "regular" cards with bonuses. Eliminating the bonuses will cause them all to use PPR instead.

 

Unlimited 30-Day cards, which are a slightly better deal than regular cards of the same value ($89) if you take 46 rides or more, manages to sell itself only because its potential value is greater than paid amount and bonus combined for a PRR. If you remove bonuses and raise fares such that the PRR of that value now costs $102, people will no longer feel they are getting "a great deal", and start paying on a per-ride basis. The bonus is a clever indirect way to get people to buy the Unlimited Cards instead, which invariably get used less than people plan to (say, if they leave town for the weekends or are sick and cannot go to work for a few days). The excess number of people buying Unlimiteds at a loss to themselves is an easy way for (MTA) to make money. And if this money is necessary to keep the system in good repair, then that is a perfectly justifiable policy.

 

For those who rely on bonuses as an emotional crutch, I am perfectly willing to give it to them, and, hopefully, so are the (MTA).

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There is no emotional reason for doing any of this. Emotions are a terrible reason to dictate policy.

 

If you remove bonuses and raise fares such that the PRR of that value now costs $102, people will no longer feel they are getting "a great deal", and start paying on a per-ride basis. The bonus is a clever indirect way to get people to buy the Unlimited Cards instead, which invariably get used less than people plan to (say, if they leave town for the weekends or are sick and cannot go to work for a few days). The excess number of people buying Unlimiteds at a loss to themselves is an easy way for to make money. And if this money is necessary to keep the system in good repair, then that is a perfectly justifiable policy.

 

 

You are getting it backwards. Getting rid of bonuses would discourage pay per ride card users, rather than encourage them. Getting rid of bonuses would funnel more people into unlimited ride cards, which just like you said above would be desirable for the MTA! More people would get unlimited ride Metrocards that way because the bonus removal reduces the value of a PPR card while the unlimited remains unchanged. Plus the MTA gets the cash immediately instead of in small lots as people reload their cards throughout the month.

 

Here's an example:

39 subway rides = $87.75, with a bonus of just under 6 fares, so 5. Buy 39, get 44.

 

Assume this person thinks they are going to ride the subway roughly that much = 22 times a month, twice on each day they ride.

 

Total cost = $87.75, all rides covered. OR get the unlimited ride card for $89.

 

That person will, if they are thinking, get the pay per ride because it is cheaper.

 

Now get rid of bonuses:

 

44 subway rides = $99

 

Unlimited Ride still = $89

 

That person will now get the unlimited ride card.

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You're all insane. I am fully entitled to the bonus the MTA provides, the BMW my rich daddy bought me, and last but not least, I am entitled to push my beliefs upon everyone.

 

Booyah. I win.

 

On a serious note however, seeing as I take the bus 4 times per week, the bonus gets me about 1 free ride. I can't complain about that.

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I say keep the Bonus - But make Refilling the Norm...

 

- Charge for New Metro Cards 5$ or something to cut down on the litter

- Allow for the Card to be registared online so they become insureable/replaceable

- Allow for Refilling of Unlimiteds by add specific number of Unlimited days to the Card (i.e a Card with 10 days left is refilled with the 30day option and now that card has 40 days to use)

- Allow for Refilling online with a Credit/Debit card instead of waiting at the machines, Unlike the Easy Pay this is manually done by the user, no Easy Pay doing it Automatically, believe it or not alot of people get turned off to Easy Pay by the Automatic thing.

-Create a central Manhattan office (or an office in each boro) that can handle all MetroCard needs from Replacement, to refunds, to New Cards, whatever.

 

If the MTA was proactive in these messures, you'd see alot less MetroCard litter...

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You're all insane. I am fully entitled to the bonus the MTA provides, the BMW my rich daddy bought me, and last but not least, I am entitled to push my beliefs upon everyone.

 

Booyah. I win.

 

On a serious note however, seeing as I take the bus 4 times per week, the bonus gets me about 1 free ride. I can't complain about that.

 

In that case I'm going to set your (:((M)(W) on (F)(1)(R)(E).

 

BMW = B**** Moving Wagon

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