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Trainspotter

New MetroCard aims to cut time spent in line

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The E-ZPass of the subways has arrived.

 

Straphangers can now buy unlimited-ride MetroCards that last two years - averting the need to stand on line at a token booth or MetroCard vending machine.

 

The EasyPayXpress MetroCard is automatically replenished every 30 days when linked to a credit card, just like the electronic E-ZPass tags used by millions of drivers.

 

Similar to the E-ZPass program, riders with EasyPayXpress can go online and see the details of their trips, including where they entered the system and made transfers.

 

"I think it would be really convenient," paint salesman Steven Gonzalez, 40, of Manhattan, said at a midtown subway station. "You wouldn't have to deal with the machines."

 

The price for 30 days of unlimited subway-bus travel is $81 - but will jump to $103 on May 31 if the Legislature doesn't agree on an MTA bailout plan.

 

The EasyPayXpress MetroCard debuted in 2006 primarily as an option for express bus riders. It was recently upgraded to appeal to riders buying monthly MetroCards.

 

Nickie Johnson, 25, of Manhattan, a receptionist, said she would benefit from the new feature.

 

"I'm not a timely person so wasting time getting a new card in the morning is a big hassle," she said.

 

Peter Walsh, 51, also of Manhattan, said he's wary of giving out credit card information online.

 

Riders have to apply online to get their first EasyPayXpress MetroCard at http://www.easypaymetrocard.com

 

Unlimited-ride monthly MetroCards are used for 32% of all subway and bus trips.

 

If many of those riders switch to the automatically refilled MetroCard, NYC Transit could see savings by having to make fewer plastic cards.

 

Meanwhile, a spokesman for Senate Majority Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) said a revised Metropolitan Transportation Authority bailout plan will be discussed Monday when the Legislature convenes in Albany.

 

Former MTA Chairman Richard Ravitch and a commission formed by Gov. Paterson support a combination of modest fare hikes, an employer-paid payroll tax and tolls on East and Harlem River bridges.

 

Under the most recent proposal, the state Legislature would grant exemptions to certain drivers for business and health-care-related travel.

 

BY Sarah Armaghan and Pete Donohue

DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS

April 17th 2009

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I already have this from Transitchek. My unlimited metrocard lasts for a year before they send me a new one. They take their money from my check every pay period, so not only do I save money since they take it out before taxes, I dont have to spend time buying the card every month. This should be good for other people that can't get Transitchek.

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At last, the MTA answers to our calls. When the EZPayExpress program was first introduced, there was argument that even with the Pay-Per-Ride bonus, it wasn't as cheap as unlimited cards. Now, they started this up.

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That's great, but what's better for all of us is smart card technology.

 

yeah, when you're running to catch the subway of course you're gonna swipe faster than normal but that defeats the purpose cuz it makes you swipe again anyway. but smart cards you only have to tap. it would also make buses a lot faster

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yeah, when you're running to catch the subway of course you're gonna swipe faster than normal but that defeats the purpose cuz it makes you swipe again anyway. but smart cards you only have to tap. it would also make buses a lot faster

In some smart card systems, the card could be inside the wallet. And the person could just tap the wallet on the sensor. It's really convenient.

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