dslreports logo
site
 
    All Forums Hot Topics Gallery
spc

spacer




how-to block ads


Search Topic:
uniqs
12
share rss forum feed


DC DSL
There's a reason I'm Command.
Premium
join:2000-07-30
Washington, DC
kudos:2
reply to AB

Re: Working at the Pentagon soon. Metro rail cost?

I do not understand why some people object to SmarTrip. It is convenient and definitely faster to use than the paper cards (or cash on buses). I don't ride on a daily basis any longer but I've had one since they were first available. I keep it in my wallet with about $10 on it all the time so when I do need to grab a ride, I just breeze through. I absolutely cannot stand being stuck behind people using paper cards or cash, especially the tourists who can't cope with putting it into the slot correctly.

Now, what does have Metro on my list is the number of platform escalators that are down lately for repair. They should have learned the lesson from what happened to NYC's subway system not being maintained in the 1960s and 70s...and not cut back on maintenance here. Even worse than cutting back was not standing up to the funding sources with the true costs of maintaining the system and making very clear what would happen if the money wasn't found somehow. Had they done that, they still might not have received adequate funding...but at least when things started breaking down the true cause of it would not be able to pin it solely on bad management at WMATA.
--
"Dance like the photo isn't being tagged; love like you've never been unfriended; and tweet like nobody is following."


grobinette
Southeast of disorder
Premium,Mod
join:2001-01-27
Springfield, VA
kudos:2
Any engineer who creates a design to put escalators out exposed to the elements should not be allowed to practice.


DC DSL
There's a reason I'm Command.
Premium
join:2000-07-30
Washington, DC
kudos:2

1 recommendation

I think even worse than that was how they designed them so they did not have interchangeable parts. And that they did not have contract terms requiring the providers to ensure continued availability of parts for at least x years, even if they went out of business. The specs and technical data should at least have been kept in escrow so it could be taken elsewhere.
--
"Dance like the photo isn't being tagged; love like you've never been unfriended; and tweet like nobody is following."


AB
Premium
join:2006-04-04
Leesburg, VA
kudos:3
reply to DC DSL
said by DC DSL:

I do not understand why some people object to SmarTrip.

You live in the city, I don't. Nor do I live near a Metro station. Your chances of casually using the Metro are much greater than mine.
Why should I buy a 'SmarTrip' when I want to go for one $1.85 ride maybe every 4-6 weeks, and why should that $1.85 ride now cost me $2.85 because of which form of trip card I'm purchasing?

I don't object to SmarTrip, I object to being extorted. As I said. It's like I'm paying tribute to Big Paulie.

More subtle extortion: When inserting a $20 bill into a fare card machine, you're required to purchase a $10 card, because you're not going to get more than $10 in change.

What's the minimum purchase when buying a SmarTrip, anyway?


DC DSL
There's a reason I'm Command.
Premium
join:2000-07-30
Washington, DC
kudos:2

2 edits
You don't really have a legit argument there. SmarTrip simply is more convenient since you can now reload ahead of time online, it is faster to get through the faregates, you can use the same instrument to ride most of the transit systems in the region, pay for parking, and (if you register it) you won't lose the money that was on it. It is more convenient for Metro since printing so many mag stripe cards costs money, maintaining the mechanical readers costs money, and on buses having to physically handle currency costs money. If you feel the paper card is more convenient for you, then you have to pay a premium for that "convenience" as with most everything else these days.

When you buy a SmarTrip, it's $10 ($5 for the card, $5 value loaded on it). Adding value at a fare machine defaults to $10 when paying by credit or debit but you can decrease it. I think $5 is the minimum for cards but I'm not sure...I always either insert cash or if I'm paying with a card $10 or $20 depending on how much I plan to use it in the next few weeks. Adding value online is a $10 minimum...but to be safe, always do that a few days in advance, not as you're about to head out.

There also is a $3 rebate when you buy a card and register it online starting 9/1/12. You have to use that within 30 days or you lose it, though.

--
"Dance like the photo isn't being tagged; love like you've never been unfriended; and tweet like nobody is following."


AB
Premium
join:2006-04-04
Leesburg, VA
kudos:3
said by DC DSL:

You don't really have a legit argument there.

Not enjoying extortion maybe isn't a legitimate "argument", but I think it's always a legitimate sentiment.

If you feel the paper card is more convenient for you, then you have to pay a premium for that "convenience" as with most everything else these days.

Odd that for so many years I never had to pay that premium, yet the Metro transit system ran about exactly the same as it does now.

When you buy a SmarTrip, it's $10 ($5 for the card, $5 value loaded on it).

So there it is. They've figured out a way to get extra from me/us no matter which choice I/we make.

At any rate (so to speak), we obviously view the situation differently, and this thread isn't directly about what/how Metro is charging for farecards anyway. Maybe we should just leave it at that.


DC DSL
There's a reason I'm Command.
Premium
join:2000-07-30
Washington, DC
kudos:2
You are blowing it way, way out of proportion by claiming "extortion" by Metro.

Once the SmarTrip reached critical mass in terms of acceptance, plus the technological improvements that have made it possible for seamless use across rail, bus, and other systems in the region, plus the other conveniences I pointed out, use of the paper cards for the subway is no longer economically desirable. WMATA is absolutely within its rights to charge a premium to customers who want to continue using an outdated and increasingly costly method of payment. I have offered adequate explanation of why the SmarTrip is a better option than paper; kindly provide some tangible benefit to a paper card that makes it superior to the SmarTrip.

No one is being extorted. Penalized, perhaps; however, paying that penalty is solely at the express request of the customer. Surely you will take at least 5 trips on the subway within a few months...in which case the card has paid for itself. And, since you will more than likely ride the subway more than 5 times you incur no further "premium" charges (or penalty) for it unless you have to replace your card for some reason (I have had mine for over 12 years now).

Frankly, there is absolutely no reason for anyone who lives in the area and uses the subway on even a semi-regular basis to not have a SmarTrip. Let tourists pay the surcharge.
--
"Dance like the photo isn't being tagged; love like you've never been unfriended; and tweet like nobody is following."