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
MTA's Andy Byford Leaving Role That May Be Derailed  (The City, February 21, 2020)
Back to the '80s? Graffiti alarms some   (Queens Chronicle, February 20, 2020)
De Blasio's latest MTA pick gets around with a city-funded chauffeur  (New York Post, February 14, 2020)
Byford leaving transit job as head of New York City's subways and buses  (Newsday, January 24, 2020)
BYFORD'S DEPARTURE THREATENS BROOKLYN BUS REDESIGN: ADVOCATES  (Brooklyn Paper, January 24, 2020)
Why Andy Byford's Departure Is So Distressing For NYC Subway & Bus Riders  (Gothamist, January 24, 2020)
NYC Transit Boss Andy Byford Resigns  (NBC4 New York, January 23, 2020)
New York City Transit boss Andy Byford quits after two years on the job  (QNS.com, January 23, 2020)
Andy Byford resigns as NYCT president  (Brooklyn Daily Eagle, January 23, 2020)
Plan for more cops squeezes subways for cash  (Riverdale Press, January 12, 2020)
'Master Builder' Cuomo Pitches Old Proposal For New 'Penn Station South'  (Streetsblog, January 7, 2020)
It's time to reopen all those closed subway entrances  (Brooklyn Eagle, December 19, 2019)
Elected officials and public transit advocates oppose MTA's $249 million proposal for subway patrol   (Bronx Times, December 19, 2019)
MTA Plan To Put Hundreds Of Police Officers In Subway System Sparks Funding Fight  (CBS New York, December 17, 2019 )
Report: The Best & Worst Of NYC Transit Over The 2010s  (Gothamist, December 12, 2019)
Reform groups demand congestion pricing board comply with open meetings law  (New York Post, November 15, 2019)
Which bus routes could be the next 14th Street?  (City & State, October 30, 2019)
Church Avenue Dedicated Bus Lanes Looking Good on First Day in Operation  (Bklyner, October 23, 2019)
The MTA plans to drop 400 Bronx bus stops, and few people are complaining  (Pix11, October 22, 2019)
Cursed High-Tech Subway Signal System Slated for Pricey Replacement  (The City, October 21, 2019)