New York, NY (WPIX)—Customers who purchased new MetroCards on Thursday may have realized the price has gone up. In some cases, as much as a whopping 17 percent.
The new MTA fare hike went into effect on Thursday and some straphangers are pissed off. They say service is getting worse, not better.
Bail Out the People Movement is holding a press conference at the MTA headquarters on Thursday at 1:00 PM to demand an immediate repeal of the fare hikes. They will also be joined by transit union members to ask for the rehiring of laid-off workers. They claim the MTA's widespread failure this week was due the amount of laid off workers that made an emergency situation even worse. Following Sunday night's blizzard, several train lines were down for days, passengers were trapped on trains for hours, and hundreds of buses were stranded across the city.
BOPM organizer Gavrielle Gemma is calling the fare hike unacceptable. "With no station attendants at many stations, no services for disabled riders, stalled trains, and dangerous conditions - simply going down a snow-covered stairway meant taking your life in your hands - we can't possibly accept a fare hike that was already outrageous," Gemma said.
The biggest increase is the 30-day unlimited monthly MetroCard. It increased by 17 percent from $89 to $104.
The price of a single ride went up 25 cents to $2.50, and an unlimited weekly pass increased from $27 to $29.
The pay-per-ride bonus was decreased to seven percent, down from 15 percent, and customers will have to spend $10 to get it. Prior to Thursday, customers only had to spend $8 to receive the bonus.
Commuters who purchased new cards before the hike should not wait too long to activate them. They have until January 10, 2011 to swipe their cards to get the full value. One-day unlimited MetroCards will expire that day. Seven-day unlimited cards and seven-day express bus passes will expire on January 16, 2011. 14-day unlimited cards will expire on January 23, 2011 and monthly unlimited cards will lose its value shortly afterwards on February 8.
One-day and 14-day unlimited MetroCards are both discontinued.
Straphangers will soon have a new fee added to their MetroCards. In mid-2011, the MTA will begin charging customers an extra $1 when purchasing new MetroCards instead of refilling old ones.
Metro-North and Long Island Railroad customers are also feeling the pinch. They should expect to pay between 7 to 14 percent more for tickets.
Drivers who use bridges and tunnels also have to pony up. Drivers who pay cash will see a bigger increase compared to those who use the EZPass. The EZPass toll on major crossings went up to $4.80. If drivers pay with cash, it will cost them $6.50. On smaller crossings, drivers will pay $1.80 with EZPass and $3.25 for cash.
At the Verrazano Bridge, the EZPass toll will go up to $9.60 and the cash price will be $13. On the Henry Hudson Bridge, be prepared to pay $2.20 with EZPass and $4 with cash.