Pay Per Ride MetroCard Compared with Unlimited MetroCard

MetroCards are Available in Two Different Varieties: Pay Per Ride and Unlimited Rides

The Pay-Per-Ride (Regular) MetroCard

This is the most common method in use today. It removes credit from your card for every ride. As the MetroCard becomes depleted of money, you must add funds to the card to continue using the card, otherwise the subway turnstile will reject your entry into the subway.

The Unlimited Ride MetroCard – 1 Day, 7 Day or 30 Day

As this MetroCard has no limits on its use during the purchased time window, you can use this card as many times as you like. This makes this method of payment the most abused card on the New York Subway with some purchasers allowing other family members to use the card, which is against the law

The 7-Day and 30-Day MetroCard can be refilled automatically, charge to a credit card or bank account.

Pay Per Ride V Unlimited Ride Card Comparison

If you ride the subway or local bus fewer than 13 rides per week or 47 rides per month, then pay-per-ride Metrocard is better for you. If you use the service more than 13 times per week, then the unlimited card is a better choice

If you ride the subway or local bus
Fewer than 13 rides per week or 47 rides per month
Choose this option
$5.50 ($5.78 value, 5% bonus added when you buy or add $5.50 or more to your MetroCard)
Your cost per ride
$2.62 (effective fare with 5% bonus)
13 rides per week
15 rides per week
20 rides per week
7-Day Unlimited $32.00 $2.46
47 rides per month
60 rides per month
75 rides per month
30-Day Unlimited $121.00 $2.57
If you ride the express bus
Fewer than 10 rides per week
Pay-Per-Ride $6.50 ($6.83 value) $6.19 (effective fare with 5% bonus)
10 rides per week Express Bus Plus 7-Day $59.50 $5.95