How to Lower Your Fare

Tips and links on tax-free transit benefits

Metro Card

Step One: Get With the TransitChek Program

You can lower your transit costs a lot. And you'll never have to wait on line in the subways again.

How? By getting your employer to join any one of several tax-free transit fare programs. Here's how tax-free transit fare benefits work:

You can have up to $255 a month of your salary exempt from all income taxes - as long as the money is used to pay for the cost of getting to work by transit. You don't need to do anything fancy, like itemize your taxes. The money will be automatically set aside and not reported as taxable income on your W-2 form.

The bottom line: You pay less in taxes. This can cut hundreds of dollars a year on your subway, bus or commuter rail costs. Your boss saves as well, because the company gets a similar break on employer taxes.

It’s really convenient. Many employees get their TransitChek MetroCards with their regular paychecks - some even get their MetroCards mailed to them to them.

Step Two: Get More Info

Several companies offer tax-free transit fare benefits. The MTA has compiled a list of providers. You can also learn more about NYC's new commuter benefits law.

Step Three: Talk to Your Employer

There are lots of good reasons your employer or company would want to provide tax-free transit benefits.

For another way to save time and money, find out how to buy MetroCards online and find out which merchants sell them.

In the News
Advocates ‘honor’ Queens bus routes  (Queens Chronicle, July 25, 2019)
Award-winning buses: Brooklyn buses are least reliable in the city  (Brooklyn Daily Eagle, July 24, 2019)
From Chelsea To LES, The M14A Runs Slower Than A Manatee  (Patch, July 24, 2019)
Manhattan’s 14th Street bus named city’s slowest; Bed Stuy-to-JFK line named least reliable, new study finds  (WPIX11, July 23, 2019)
Straphangers Campaign names annual Schleppie, Pokey awards for poor bus service  (Yahoo! News, July 23, 2019)
Manhattan’s M14A is officially the slowest bus route in NYC  (Curbed, July 23, 2019)
Pokey Awards: This Staten Island bus averages less than 8 mph  (Staten Island Advance, July 23, 2019)
Transit advocacy groups name M14A slowest bus in the city  (1010 Wins, July 23, 2019)
Transit Group Names M14A Bus Slowest In New York City  (CBS 880, July 23, 2019)
Reporte: autobuses de la MTA tan lentos como tortugas  (Telemundo 47, July 23, 2019)
2 Bronx bus route earn ‘Pokey & Schleppie’ awards for slow, unreliable service  (News 12 Bronx, July 23, 2019)
M14A Bus Wins “Pokey Award” For Slowest Route in New York City  (The Lo-Down, July 24, 2019)
Straphangers Campaign names annual Schleppie, Pokey awards for poor bus service  (ABC 7, July 23, 2019)
MTA's M14A bus named slowest in NYC, with average speed of 4.3 mph  (amNY, July 23, 2019)
lowest bus in NYC moves at 4.3 mph, earns “Pokey Award”  (New York Daily News, July 23, 2019)
NYC’s slowest bus goes only 4.2 mph, which is slower than a manatee  (New York Post, July 23, 2019)
Advocates Give M14A 'Pokey Award' for Being Slowest Bus in NYC  (NY1, July 23, 2019)
Keep on schleppin’ — Queens buses aren’t as bad as other boroughs  (Queens Daily Eagle, July 23, 2019)
Lawmakers call for exemptions from NYC’s controversial congestion pricing plan  (New York Post, July 6, 2019)
Electric Car Charging Stations Coming to Park Slope in Fall 2019  (Bklyner, June 21, 2019)