OMNY Replacing Metrocards?
OMNY which stands for One Metro New York is a contactless payment system that is currently still being implemented all over New York and its surrounding areas. Many New Yorkers know, but some may not. But by 2023, metro cards will be phased out by the MTA and replaced with a contactless payment method called OMNY.
As of December 31st, 2020, OMNY became available to all MTA buses and train stations. Now while this may cause some dissonance due to the integration of going cashless, and the fact that we can’t live in a cashless world, OMNY will become a huge step forward into more technological advancements. And with the ongoing pandemic as of this article, going contactless is a much safer and beneficial alternative to the MetroCard.
The History of Metrocards
Before OMNY and even metro cards, tokens were used. But tokens became an inconvenience. They were heavy and made lots of noise. Thus in 1992, metro cards started being utilized.
These magnetic strip cards were refillable cards that took cash/card and then utilized on trains and buses. It was a much bigger convenience than token coins. And up till now, it was the best form of payment. There were many benefits to using a MetroCard such as buying a weekly or monthly card that allowed you to swipe unlimited times for a set amount of money. This saved a lot of money than paying consistently every time you enter the station. But now with new technological advancements, it became time to go even further, and out comes a payment method that didn’t require a physical card or the need to refill.
How OMNY Works and Convenience
OMNY is basically a contactless payment method. This means that you can use any method that accepts tap. Such forms would be credit cards that allow tap or phones implementing payments like Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Samsung Pay. You would then just tap or hover your card/device over the OMNY reader and the payment would be accepted.
Transfers and multiple riders are also acknowledged with OMNY. Just make sure that when you’re transferring, you’re using the same exact card you used and tap within the normal “two-hour window.” The same goes for multiple riders! Pay for how many riders you have and once transferring, tap the same amount of times, and the system will read them as free transfers.
And for the people that can’t have cards or prefer to pay cash? OMNY will most likely create a card similar to a MetroCard that you don’t need to swipe. You just fill it with cash, and the card will be accepted at OMNY readers for you to just tap and go.
Upgrade with OMNY
And while OMNY is still being phased in, consider getting a new advanced phone that is compatible with the likes of OMNY.
The convenience of this system is that you don’t need your physical wallet on hand. It is much safer and reduces the risk of having your wallet snatched or robbed from you. It’s also much faster than taking out your wallet if you use a phone. Just implement your digital wallet, tap the card you want to pay, and go. It’s that simple! You can even choose what card you want to use, instead of searching for your MetroCard or having to think about what card you need to use to refill your MetroCard.
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Get excited with the new advancements that OMNY has to offer, and get started on preparing for the phase-out process! Call your bank to send you a card that offers a tap payment method, or update/upgrade your older phone to implement a digital wallet with the likes of Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay.