Last month we reported on the imminent launch of the MetroCard’s eventual replacement, OMNY and we’re happy to report that it’s officially now active in a few stations in The Bronx.
At E 138th Street and Grand Concourse on the 4 and 5 train and at 149th Street and Grand Concourse on the 2, 4, and 5 line, you can simply just tap your NFC enabled phone or a credit card or debit card that’s NFC capable to enter the subway system.
I’ve actually tried it several times and it’s so much faster than swiping a MetroCard and the beauty of the new system is that you don’t have to wait in line at a MetroCard vending machine to refill your card when your balance is low.
This recently happened on a trip to midtown and when I went to get on the subway at Grand Central, I swiped my card and got the dreaded INSUFFICIENT FARE. I turned around and saw the long line for the MetroCard vending machine but quickly remembered that I could just tap one of my NFC enabled credit cards and just walk right through.
It literally saved me a number of minutes and I was able to catch the arriving train without having to race for it.
The only drawback right now is that unlimited rides aren’t being offered at the moment in the new system but it’s perfect for those who sporadically use the subway or don’t rely on unlimited rides.
As of right now, these are the only stations in The Bronx where you can try it out.
In March 2020, the system will expand to Manhattan Buses (it’s already on all Staten Island buses) but a time table as to when it will reach Bronx buses hasn’t been listed as of yet.
According to the OMNY: “During the rollout, you can continue using your own contactless card or smart device. OMNY supports a full-fare, pay-per-ride option for now, with free transfers at OMNY-enabled subway stations, bus routes, and Staten Island Railway locations.“
Let us know your thoughts on the new system and if you like it!
And say goodbye to your MetroCard by 2023 as it will be phased out and go the way of the token!
Watch below to see how the new system works:
With contactless cards:
With your smartphone or wearable:
For more information, visit OMNY.