Starting today, riders in New Tork City can tap a cellphone or contactless credit card to enter certain subway trains and buses. The OMNY contactless system is rolling out at 16 stations along the 4, 5 and 6 lines between Grand Central and Atlantic Avenue-Barclay Center, as well as Staten Island buses. Right now, riders can only use the pay-per-ride option, but eventually the system will allow you to buy weekly and monthly passes.
At the same time, Mastercard has announced that cardholders who tap to pay for subway rides on Fridays in June and July will get refunded fares, and have the chance to win Priceless Surprises, the company said in a release. The program, called Mastercard Fareback Friday, is meant to help get subway riders familiar with the process of tapping their Mastercards to pay.
“Mastercard is thrilled to partner with the MTA to completely transform the experience for commuters in New York City,” said Mastercard Executive Vice President of U.S. Merchants and Acceptance Linda Kirkpatrick. “Mastercard cardholders who tap their cards or phones at subway turnstiles will benefit from shorter wait times and a slick experience. Mastercard will be the first to offer cardholders an incentive to tap and pay for their subway ride.”
To know if a card has tap and pay capability, consumers can check for a Wi-Fi style logo on the front or back of the card. Also, Mastercard users can add their payment info to a phone and tap and pay that way. People can get up to $5.50 back, which is the same as two rides, every Friday.