Subways Carry Over 4 Million Paid Riders for First Time Since March 12, 2020
Subway OMNY Taps Hit Single-Day Record with 1.69 Million Taps
Metro-North Railroad Sets Three-Day Average Ridership Record
Governor Hochul today announced that New York City subway recorded 4,002,961 paid rides on Thursday, April 20. The last time the subways carried more than 4 million riders was March 12, 2020, when 4.1 million New Yorkers rode the subway. OMNY, the Authority's contactless fare payment system, also set a single-day subway record with 1,699,914 taps, accounting for 42.5 percent of all paid rides.
"The MTA is the lifeblood of this city, and New York State has made critical investments in our subways to improve the rider experience," Governor Hochul said. "Surpassing four million riders for the first time since the start of the pandemic is a testament to the resiliency of New Yorkers and the importance of supporting the nation's largest transit system."
MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber said, "I'm grateful to our Governor who is leading the effort to fund mass transit so that we can continue to provide safe, reliable and frequent service for all New Yorkers. At the height of the pandemic, ridership dropped by 90 percent, but we kept the system running full tilt to make sure that essential workers could get to hospitals, pharmacies, grocery stores and distribution centers. This record is a testament to the resilience of New Yorkers and a reminder that mass transit is the lifeblood of this city."
New York City Transit President Richard Davey said, "Hitting ridership records every week is something I can get used to and is a vote of confidence in the subway system. To keep this momentum going, New York City Transit will continue to enhance customer satisfaction wherever we can. Whether that be the OMNY fare-capping pilot, the new customer service centers at stations, we are constantly looking at ways to provide faster, cleaner and safer service."
Metro-North Railroad reached a new three-day (Tuesday through Thursday) average ridership COVID-era high of 193,111, or 73.5 percent of the baseline ridership comparison from February 2020. This comes after Metro-North reached record daily pandemic-era ridership on Wednesday, April 19 with 195,086 riders, or 74 percent of the pre-pandemic average.
The Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) has exceeded 200,000 riders on 16 days since Feb. 27, the date Grand Central Madison opened for full service, a threshold the railroad had only crossed twice during the first 57 days of 2023. During the seven days between April 9 and April 15, the LIRR carried an average of 168,726 daily customers, the best seven-day average since March 2020.
Metro-North President and Long Island Rail Road Interim President Catherine Rinaldi said, "Wherever you're traveling within the Metro-North and LIRR service regions, commuter railroads are the most convenient option, especially with the opening of Grand Central Madison. Customers can use the all-in-one TrainTime app to purchase tickets, plan trips, view train capacity, and track trains for both commuter railroads."
OMNY's Continued Growth
OMNY continues to grow in market share among New York City Transit customers, with the first one million tap day reached in April of 2022. The MTA reached the 500 million total OMNY tap milestone in September of 2022 when a customer tapped in at Grand Central Terminal. OMNY has now processed cards issued in 192 of the 195 countries that issue bank cards.
OMNY customers now consistently comprise nearly half of all subway riders, with a 42.5 percent market share of paid rides. Nearly 100 percent of all OMNY transactions are made on customers' own personal devices or cards, making the MTA unique among North American transit systems.
In October, OMNY was rolled out to Reduced-Fare customers, who can now make the switch from MetroCard to riding with their personal device or contactless card. Reduced-Fare customers can make the switch from MetroCard to OMNY seamlessly online with the OMNY digital assistant, which is available 24/7 at OMNY.info.