New York MTA completes systemwide OMNY rollout

Jan. 4, 2021
The MetroCard will be phased out entirely by 2023.

OMNY, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) new contactless fare payment system, has been installed into the final subway station, marking the completion of the year-and-a-half-long rollout. OMNY will ultimately replace MetroCard by 2023.

Officials also turned on OMNY readers on all Brooklyn and Queens bus routes. The completed installation of more than 15,000 OMNY readers at all 472 stations, on all 5,800 buses and at Staten Island Railway stations, represents the culmination of the first major phase of the multi-year project.

"This is a big day for the MTA," said Patrick J. Foye, MTA Chairman and CEO. "When we launched OMNY, I knew Al Putre, Wayne Lydon and the entire team we'd assembled to lead this tremendous effort were incredibly talented, but I still couldn't have imagined what they would encounter in order to make this project a reality. Through it all, they persevered and got it done. Al and his team have truly delivered for our customers."

Currently, customers can use OMNY to pay their fares by tapping contactless bank cards or smart devices equipped with digital wallets on OMNY readers. To continue to educate customers on the benefits of OMNY, the MTA is launching a new marketing campaign “Tap On, Get On” systemwide.

“This is a great milestone for our customers," said Sarah Feinberg, interim New York City Transit (NYCT) president. "It's been a profoundly challenging year at the MTA and New York City Transit, but the OMNY team rose to the challenge and delivered this huge project on time. NYCT teams have been relentless in their focus and have continued to make key improvements throughout the system despite the pandemic and I'm excited for our customers to experience these new benefits."

"We did it, and we did it on time, like I promised we would," said Al Putre, MTA OMNY Fare Payment Programs executive director at Eastern Parkway–Brooklyn Museum station. "We did it on budget too. I remain immensely proud of the MTA team responsible for bringing a truly modern fare payment system to all of our 5,800 buses and all 472 subway stations as well as to our partners at Cubic Transportation Systems for their great work. We endured a range of challenges, but stared down adversity every single time and got the job done. Not even a once-in-a-century pandemic could stop us from implementing a once-in-a-generation fare payment system."

Since OMNY was launched at a limited number of stations in late May of 2019, more than 35 million taps have been recorded with bank cards issued in 137 countries including the U.S. and 2.4 million unique payment credentials have been used in the OMNY system to date. OMNY currently accounts for more than 10 percent of all taps in the system. A year ago, that figure was at more than four percent and the figure is expected to grow considerably over the next year.

Beginning in 2021, customers will be able to purchase the OMNY card – a contactless fare card – at retail locations throughout the region. OMNY will also begin expanding fare options in 2021 with the introduction of reduced fares for senior customers and riders with disabilities and the integration with paratransit services. The card will eventually be available at vending machines in stations as well.

Improvements to the digital experience are set to debut in 2021, including a refresh of the OMNY website and the launch of the OMNY mobile app. These efforts will give customers additional flexibility and choice in where, when and how their fare is paid.