The MTA Might Hike Subway Fares to $3– in Case You Thought Things Couldn’t Get Any Worse
Who wants to pay more for the subway?
Rhetorical question, no one wants to. But we will soon, as the rumors come to life about a price hike for 2017.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will recommend a 25-cent jump to the base fare at its board meeting next week — passing on another option that would have kept it at $2.75.
Thanks guys, appreciate it. The deal that MTA brass is pushing would also increase the bonus that riders get for every round trip on their MetroCard to 16% from the current 11%. That means an extra 96 cents for every $6 purchase.
As reported by The New York Daily News, a source familiar with the decision said the $3 base fare was presented as the best deal for the riders who use the system the most heavily.
“Whether it was low, middle or upper income, the majority of people are buying the bonus pay-per-ride card,” the source said.
Since 2005, the cost of a MetroCard swipe has increased 50% — from $2 to $3. At the same time, the inflation rate has hovered around 2% a year.
Factoring in the bonuses, the $3 proposal was the smallest increase since the MTA started raising fares every other year in 2009.
But even with that it’s still hard to digest. Subway riders aren’t typically getting a pay upgrade, and the extra dollar can be harmful to people that need to travel to work.
David Jones, president of the Community Service Society and an MTA board member, agreed.
“We’re talking about working people who are trying to make their way in a very expensive city,” said Jones, who supports a proposal, called Fair Fares, that would give half-priced MetroCards to struggling straphangers.
“We have to have some direct subsidy to help people who are living at or below poverty.”
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MTA honchos had considered — but rejected — an option to keep the fare at the existing $2.75 in exchange for a steep cut to the round-trip bonus — down to 5%. That would have added 28 cents for every $5.50 round-trip purchase.
Under either plan, monthly MetroCards will go to $121 from $116.50. Weekly passes will increase by $1, to $32, and single-ride paper tickets will cost $3.25 from $3.
The MTA board will vote for one of the two proposals after agency brass offer their recommendation.
The fare hike will go into effect March 19th.