Tap to Ride: MBTA announces new contactless payments for subway, buses and trolleys

BOSTON — MBTA passengers will now have an easier way to travel with just the tap of their smartphone or credit card.

The MBTA announced on Tuesday that contactless payments will be accepted onboard buses, Green Line trolleys, Mattapan Line trolleys, and at all gated subway stations beginning Thursday, August 1, 2024.

This new initiative is part of the MBTA’s goal of offering easier, more convenient, and modernized ways for riders to pay fares.

“Transitioning to this contactless system is a part of the next generation of transportation that our riders deserve. This will allow them to save time and make it easier for riders and travelers to pay and board as they use the system,” said Transportation Secretary and CEO Monica Tibbits-Nutt.

CharlieCards will not be impacted by this change and will still need to be used by riders with weekly or monthly passes. The current ways to pay will remain the same.

I’m proud of the progress made to deliver this important amenity for our riders, bringing our payment system for our bus and subway system into the 21st century. This lays the groundwork for the fare payment system of the future, incorporating our fare structure including the recently approved Income-Eligible Reduced Fares,” said MBTA General Manager and CEO Phillip Eng. “The MBTA team’s steadfast dedication to bring this initiative to fruition along with our partner Cubic, worked collaboratively, solving challenges to demonstrate our commitment to the public.  I thank our riders for their patience as we continue to build a system that they can rely on and be proud of.”

According to the MBTA, passengers can use their cards, phones, or watches to pay for fares.

Travelers will also be able to check their contactless payments through an online Charlie account where they can manage charges, view trip history, and more.

Riders in reduced fare programs (such as Senior, Student, and TAP) will have the option to link their benefits to their contactless card, phone, or watch.

To sign up for an online Charlie account, visit http://charlie.mbta.com

The new Tap to Ride program will be rolled out on August 1st, for more information, visit the link here.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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