I like many straphangers are sick of the outdated & flawed MetroCard system. While I can’t vouch that the majority prefer to go back to tokens like I do or perhaps a more updated & with the times system, we definitely agree that the MetroCard has to go!
My biggest gripe comes with the repeated stolen fares that plague pay per ride MetroCard users from turnstiles that are needing a severe cleaning. This was the case yet again when I boarded at the Broadway-Lafayette station on Wednesday morning to catch a train to Harlem. I knew what time to get to the station by to catch the particular train I needed.
I arrive with time to spare & 1 fare left on my card. Of course the turnstile steals my fare. Thankfully that booth is staffed 24×7 so the agent took a look & saw that the fare was eaten by the turnstile & she let me in. However dealing with that caused me to get down the stairs to see my train pulling out of the station.
I have lost count on how many times I will properly swipe my card yet the turnstile will not accept it & then claim insufficient fare. Many of the station entrances I use are not staffed by anyone so if I lose a fare, I either have to buy another one, jump the turnstile or find the entrance where someone is.
The first option is completely unfair as why should I when I technically have paid for the fare already but had it stolen by the turnstile. The third option is not always feasible as it could be a couple of blocks away or sometimes no one is on the side of travel you are on as they are in the booth going the opposite direction. The second option is illegal but I personally have zero issue with someone who does it when they have had their fare stolen. What about situations where you don’t have enough money left on you to buy another fare?
What really drives me crazy is how I mysteriously never have a problem with single ride or unlimited MetroCards as one swipe & I am good to go, even in the same exact stations I always seem to have issues in. We are paying more for the same service & malfunctioning equipment. It is 2013, better ways exist to pay for fares. I would be just fine with going back to tokens as I have never missed a bus or train because of one. The same can’t be said for the outdated & troublesome MetroCard!
P.S. One of the worst stations with this problem is the 2nd Ave entrance to the 2nd Ave station as no booth is there & those turnstiles repeatedly eat fares. Forget jumping as the cops hide in the room to the far left against the wall by the staircaise to the Queens-bound platforms.
xoxo Transit Blogger