This is something that even more riders may find convenient. In addition to the 30-Day pass, 7-Day passes are now available for reload via text message in the TAP-TO-GO pilot program. More riders can take advantage of the benefits: it’s fast, convenient and passes are loaded immediately onto your card without any delays.
TAP-TO-GO is a six-month trial program that began in June and will run through Dec. 1. It’s free to participate, however be sure to register for the pilot program first so you can get your special TAP card to use.
Metro Weekly and Monthly passes are also available:
•at TAP vending machines all Metro Rail and Orange Line Stations
•online at taptogo.net
•by calling 866.TAPTOGO
•at nearly one of 400 vendor locations (click here for locations)
How to sign up
1) Text TAPSIGNUP to 28950 or visit taptogo.net to sign up online.
2) If texting, mobileAxept (Metro’s contractor) will reply with a link to sign up.
3) Enter your name, mailing address and email address. Participants will be directed to the BlueFin-hosted secure payment site to submit credit/debit card information. Credit/debit cards will not be charged until you receive your card in the mail and load your first pass.
4) Once your information has been validated, mobileAxept will send a text confirming participant has successfully joined the TAP-TO-GO pilot program.
5) Participants receive a special TAP card in the mail within seven to 10 business days, with instructions on how load your first Metro 7-Day or 30-DayPass. Again, you need to use this new card — it’s not possible to sign up using an existing TAP card.
How to reload
•Text TAP7DAY to 28950 to reload your Metro 7-Day Pass. You will receive a reply text message confirming your payment has been received and your card is loaded.
•Text TAP30DAY to 28950 to reload your Metro 30-Day Pass. You will receive a reply text message confirming your payment has been received and your card is loaded.
•When it’s time to reload either pass, you’ll get a reminder text so you can avoid paying single trips
For frequently asked questions, click here.
Categories: Go Metro, Metro Lifestyle, Projects, Technology, Transit Service
Now they can focus on curtesy rides
A lot of the concerns Metro has with “new ideas” involving technology aren’t really new. They’ve already been used somewhere around the world and they all figured it out how to make it work. It’s just the Luddites and anti-technology folk at Metro who are totally against new technology because they are so afraid of technology instead of embracing them.
Things like a fare system involving tap-in and tap-out using NFC enabled smartphones, fare gates that remain open so as to make people go through them quicker, better TVMs with touchscreen displays, better designs and placements of TVMs, everything has already been done in other US transit agencies and abroad, and how they all work are all up on the internet.
Any issue that you can think up of, has already been solved. There are millions of transit riders every single day using these new technologies all over the world without a problem.
It’s only Metro that drags their feet in investing in technology with excuses and concerns when all their concerns have already been figured out by numerous transit agencies all over the world.
Look at Japan’s TVMs:
Why can’t we have high tech TVMs with bright touch screen displays and message prompts in multiple languages like this that comes along with excellent customer service where a live person pops out from behind the machine to help you when you need it?
It would be nice to be able to use a TAP stored value at a convenience store or Starbucks, etc. That was a nice thing about traveling in Japan. I did not have to carry a lot of cash.. just used a Suica card.
Wow, now that’s what I call service. And it makes perfect logic too to have a person back behind the TVMs to help out confused travelers. Machines can only do so much, you still need maintenance and upkeep, it still needs change to be restocked, so why not just keep the station staffed with people in smart areas like behind the TVMs so when customer service is needed, they can come right behind the TVMs?
The Japanese are still decades ahead of us. I remember watching Back to the Future where Marty McFly says “all the best stuff comes from Japan.” Even when we beat them with iPods, iPhones, and computers, they still show us that they still put the to shame to the US in many things.
Metro really should learn from Japan and how they do mass transit. Sending people over to Japan to learn their tricks of the trade is a better use of tax dollars than spending money renaming stations after politicians.
How about CommiterChecks? When will it be possible to use those without going to a transit agency office?
At least with stored value, I can take my CommuterChecks to any agency that accepts TAP, not just Metro. But it’s still a pain. Up in the Bay Area, Walgreen’s accepts CommuterChecks to load up Clipper cards.
Wow, Metro has finally joined the 21st century. In the meantime, the rest of the world has zoomed us by where SMS is now a dying format and they are using NFC enabled smartphones for these things.
How many agencies in the U.S. are using NFC for fare payment? I’m curious. There was a Board motion last year asking Metro to study it but I know there are some issues — and I believe I put a story in headlines a few months ago about some challenges with NFC. Tx,
Editor, The Source
Can I ask you why you often insist on comparing Metro to other “US agencies” as some sort of good excuse rather than looking beyond our borders to see what other countries do? America is not the smartest when it comes to public transit; the fact that we have to rely on importing boring tunnels (the Netherlands) and train sets (Japan, Italy, Germany, etc.) from abroad shows us that America is not the technology or innovative leader in mass transit.
Anyway, since you limit yourself to only other US agencies, here are some, which are spearheading away to the next level:
UTA: http://www.rideuta.com/mc/?page=RidingUTA-PayingYourFare-ElectronicFare (pay via Google Wallet and Softpay (formerly known as ISIS)
Austin Metro: http://www.capmetro.org/app/
DC Metro: http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/news/PressReleaseDetail.cfm?ReleaseID=5778
San Francisco: http://www.businessinsider.com/san-francisco-transit-agency-in-talks-to-build-a-smartphone-ticketing-app-2014-9
And that’s only the US.
Let’s expand the view towards other countries:
London Underground: http://www.pocket-lint.com/news/128555-london-tubes-next-to-accept-contactless-and-smartphone-payments-instead-of-oyster
Hong Kong MRT: http://www.octopus.com.hk/get-your-octopus/choose-your-octopus/mobile-sim/en/index.html
And let’s not forget Japan, because they’re the cutting edge in these things and they’ve been pay for transit using cell phone using this since 2006, the earliest among everyone else:
Japan: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osaifu-Keitai and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_Suica
We know about your concerns about “what if the battery dies out.” Fact: there’s already other countries using them perfectly fine, it’s already going testing in other US cities, doesn’t that give you a hint that it’s a non-issue and that your concerns are easily solvable (just like fare gates and turnstiles)?
Why must we always be the last in these things, spend millions of tax dollars in outdated technology, when everyone else is ditching that idea and are already looking to the future?
Fair enough. Thanks for the links! Looks like a mix of pilot programs and agencies actually using NFC.
Editor, The Source
Oh, and the solution to “what if the battery dies out?”
Buy an external battery charger. You can find them on Amazon.com for less than thirty bucks.
Anyone who relies public transit these days who uses their smartphone daily such as apps, GPS, using social media, watching Youtube videos, etc. as they ride mass transit carry these as a backup. See, there’s your answer. Problem solved.
I hope this program goes well. If it does, Metro riders hopefully won’t have to rely on going to a few select retailers or a semi-reliable/usable website (but it may change soon). Also, I hope in the short term that Metro can develop something similar to what prepaid phone cards are. You buy a preset amount of credit or a pass (ex. $30 or weekly pass) , you scratch a code off the back, text it, and it’s added to your TAP card.
Great. If this truly works and the passes can be loaded immediately, we are indeed one step closer to making the 1-way fares available for people to use on TAP cards. I signed up for the pilot last week and cannot wait for the card to arrive in the mail.