Fair Fares half-price MetroCard program to cover more New Yorkers

The Fair Fares program will expand later this year and again next year, city officials said. Photo Credit: Charles Eckert

The program will be available to NYCHA residents, CUNY students and veterans living in poverty, the city said.

The Fair Fares program will expand later this year and again next year, city officials said.
The Fair Fares program will expand later this year and again next year, city officials said. Photo Credit: Liz Clayman

The city’s program that provides half-priced MetroCards to low-income New Yorkers will expand this fall to include NYCHA residents, CUNY students and veterans living in poverty, the city said Monday. 

The Fair Fares program, offering discounted weekly and monthly MetroCards, initially launched in January for 30,000 New Yorkers who are receiving cash assistance through the city Department of Social Services. Beginning this month, a discounted pay-per-ride option also will be available. 

In addition to expanding later this year, the program will extend to all New Yorkers living at or below the federal poverty line in January 2020, Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson said.

Since the program’s inception, Social Services has “been conducting outreach” to more than 45,000 people receiving cash assistance and/or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits to inform them about their eligibility for the discounted fare. The city also will launch an advertising campaign this month, targeting 25 ZIP codes where there are large numbers of eligible individuals.

Eligible New Yorkers can call 311 to find out how to receive their card, and there will be an online platform in April, de Blasio and Johnson said. 

Nicole Brown