MetroCards are the only way to pay for your fare. (Tokens are no longer excepted anywhere--they are obsolete.) They function much like gift cards; you can add as much money as you like with the balance to be used only on subways and buses. When the card runs out of money, you can refill them. Don't throw the empty card out or you will be charged an extra $1 for a new card. MetroCards can be purchased at all subway stations and at more than 3000 other locations such as hotels, newstands, restaurants and the like.
You can also purchase New York City subway MetroCards from subway station vending machines with cash, credit card, or debit card.
SPECIAL FARES FOR CHILDREN, SENIORS & THE DISABLED
Children: Up to 3 children, under 44" ride free with one adult.
Seniors: 65 years and over, with ID, quality for reduced fare.
Disabled: Qualify for a reduced fare.
WHEN WILL THE NEXT TRAIN ARRIVE?
The MTA now has two FREE apps that advise you when the next train will arrive in the station. There are 'countdown clocks' in many of the stations, but not all. You can download one for weekday service (currently just for IRT trains 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and the Times Square-Grand Central Shuttle), and one for weekends which also advise you about delays due to track work, track changes, and provides alternate routes to your final station.<br>
The weekday app is available for free in Apple’s app store for iPhones, the iPod Touch and iPads. There is also an online version available for desktops.
Go to mta.info to download The Weekender for either Apple or Android devices.
NERVOUS ABOUT THE NEW YORK CITY SUBWAY?
HERE IS A FANTASTIC AND DISCOUNTED OPTION
If you are nervous about taking the New York City subway and/or buse, here is a fantastic option! Take the Hop on/Hop off Bus. How does it work? It's easy. Get on the stop nearest your hotel. The bus continue on to stop at all the big sightseeing attractions allowing you to get off if you wish. When you are finished with that attraction simply get back on the bus and continue on.
While you are on the bus you will enjoy a narrated guide offering audio tracks in 11 different languages English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Russian and Hebrew.
There are lots of loops and tours to choose from. This will make you feel more comfortable and you don't have to worry about getting lost. Through this link only, you can enjoy a 10% discount on a City Sights NY Uptown, Downtown, Night or Brooklyn Tour! Use code: 10OFFCS, or, save 5$ OFF NYC Sightseeing!!
HOW MUCH MONEY IS LEFT ON YOUR METROCARD?
There are MetroCard readers in all stations. They are usually located in front of, and directly on, the station booth. Simply swipe your card and your remaining balance will be displayed. Also, everytime you swipe your card as you enter the station, your remaining balance will be displayed.
You'll get the hang of it very quickly!
HOW TO USE A METROCARD
Place your card, black strip down, and swipe it firmly and quickly through the slot. The turnstile will signal when the card is read and permit you to enter. Simply push through the bar. If you aren't sure, watch the person before you and/or ask a someone for help. New Yorkers are actually very friendly--hey, I am!
NEED HELP GETTING TO YOUR DESTINATION?
utilize the customized subway trip planner (www.tripplanner.mta.info)! Type in your point of origin, your point of arrival and, Voila! Your exact route will be mapped out for you!
HOW TO IDENTIFY A SUBWAY STATION ENTRANCE
All subway stations are listed the on subway maps. Station entrances are clearly marked and include colorful signs reflecting the subway lines that are contained within the particular station. Here is a picture of a typical New York City subway station entrance.
BEST TIPS FOR TRAVELING WITH KIDS
When traveling with children, check out my best tips for keeping crankiness to a minimum and for ensuring safety too! Click here and scroll down to the very bottom of the page.