Easy Card

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Easy Card
EASY Card MDT and SFRTA.jpg
Location South Florida metropolitan area, Florida, United States
Launched 1 October 2009
Technology
Operator Miami-Dade Transit
South Florida Regional Transportation Authority
Manager Miami-Dade Transit
Currency USD ($150 maximum load)
Stored-value Cash value
Credit expiry After card/ticket expiration date
Auto recharge Automatic replenishment
Validity
Retailed
  • Online
  • Telephone
  • Selected resellers
  • Train stations
Variants
  • Easy Card (20-year lifetime; older cards 3 years)
  • Easy Ticket (60-day lifetime)
  • Corporate/Employee, Disabled, Student, & Senior Reduced Fare
  • Golden & Patriot Passports
Website transitstore.miamidade.gov

The Easy Card system is a series of linked contactless smartcard systems used by Miami-Dade Transit and South Florida Regional Transportation Authority in the South Florida, Florida, United States area. The Easy Card allows for electronic payment on multiple public transport systems including Miami Metrorail, rapid transit rail system; Tri-Rail, commuter rail system; and Metrobus. Other public transportation agencies in the South Florida area which may eventually join the system include Broward County Transit as well as Palm Tran.[1]

While both the Miami-Dade Transit as well as the SFRTA fare collection systems were installed by Cubic Transportation Systems, combined they are the first multiple agency regional system in the United States that interoperates through the American Public Transportation Association's Contactless Fare Media Standard.[2]

Media Formats[edit]

While the system as a whole is referred to as the "Easy Card" system, there actually is more than one type of contactless smartcard media in use:

  • "Easy Cards" are plastic smartcards designed to last at least twenty years. Easy Cards may be used to store more than one type of fare at the same time, and can be registered with the issuing transportation agency to obtain a replacement if lost or stolen. Easy Cards programmed to permit discounted fare rates are supplied to eligible users by both Miami-Dade Transit and SFRTA, and often have the user's photograph placed on the back surface of the card.
  • "Easy Tickets" are paper-based smartcard media designed to last up to 60 days. They can only store the original fare type first loaded onto them, cannot be used for most discounted fare rates, and cannot be registered in case of loss or theft. A specially colored, discounted Easy Ticket is offered by Miami-Dade Transit for college students, but requires said students to carry student identification while using it.[3]

In addition to the above, SFRTA uses their Easy Card ticket machines to print out purely paper tickets that lack any smartcard media for same-day and/or weekend usage. If a paper ticket user wishes to transfer to Metrorail, they must obtain an EASY Card or Ticket (or use a Smartphone with Easy Pay) at either the Tri-Rail and Metrorail transfer station or the Miami Airport Station.

While Miami-Dade Transit ticket machines provide both EASY Cards as well as Easy Tickets, SFRTA/Tri-Rail ticket machines provide only Easy Cards. Ticket agents at attended Tri-Rail stations are able to provide EASY Tickets.[4]

Usable Systems[edit]

EASY Cards as well as related smartcard media can be used on the following systems:

Coming soon Broward County Transit and PalmTran of West Palm Beach

An EASY card or ticket purchased from any participating agency may be used on any participating system, provided it is loaded with the proper fare or has a sufficient cash balance.

Metrobus users only have to tap their Easy Card or Easy Ticket once on a fare validator when boarding a bus. Metrorail users have to tap their card or ticket when entering the faregates for a Metrorail station, as well as when leaving them. Tri-Rail users have to tap their card or ticket on ticket validators found at every Tri-Rail station platform prior to entering and after exiting a train.

Systems which require entry and exit taps must see the exit tap of a card in order to issue a transfer.[6] Transfer discounts within Miami-Dade Transit as well as from Tri-Rail to Miami-Dade Transit are only available when an EASY card or ticket is used to pay the fare both on the system/vehicle being transferred to, as well as the one previously used.[7]

Easy Pay[edit]

In addition to the Easy Card system, Miami-Dade Transit is implementing a system called Easy Pay which allows payment of transit fares using a smartphone. Once a fare has been purchased and activated, a QR barcode is generated containing the fare that can be scanned at selected turnstiles or shown to bus drivers.

Currently only one-day passes are available in this system.[8]

Additional features that are planned for the application include 7-day and monthly passes, along with the ability to reload Easy Cards. In addition the fares of Tri-Rail and other area systems may eventually be added.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/state/tri-rail-switching-to-automated-fare-collection-1190757.html
  2. ^ http://www.contactlessnews.com/2010/02/23/cubic-to-deliver-smart-card-fare-system-for-south-florida
  3. ^ http://www.miamidade.gov/transit/fares_college.asp
  4. ^ http://www.tri-rail.com/EASY/docs/EASY_Card_Coming_Soon_FAQs.pdf
  5. ^ http://www.miamidade.gov/transit/transfers-outside-mdt.asp#4
  6. ^ http://www.miamidade.gov/transit/transfers.asp
  7. ^ http://www.miamidade.gov/transit/fares-transfer-sfrta-fee.asp
  8. ^ http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article110821677.html

External links[edit]