MetroRail Ticket Changes and More Frequent Trains

Payment Changes

  • The Community Impact newsletter, Sept 2016 edition, mentioned changes coming to MetroRail ticket payment options.  Starting Oct 9th of this year, ticket vending machines located at MetroRail Stations will no longer accept debit or credit cards.  The machines will only accept cash payments and store value cards.
  • The changes will take effect during a 3 week time-frame in October.  October 9th will see the shift at the Downtown, Plaza Saltillo, and MLK Jr. Stations.  October 16th, changes will occur at the Highland, Crestview, and Kramer Stations.  The final shift at the Howard, Lakeline and Leander Stations will happen on October 23rd.
  • The conversion is driven by a $5 million upgrade and maintenance cost associated with new chip security technology, and Capital Metro plans to invest more of those funds into its transit services instead.

Fear not, riders, you have other (and more convenient) options!  Capital Metro allows credit card purchases  both on its website and on its mobile apps.  Billing information can be saved online or in-app so you don’t have to repeatedly enter your card number AND the e-tickets are more environmentally friendly!  Capital Metro will also offer riders the option to buy train passes at retail stores, including HEB and Randalls.

Personally, I have found that the ticket kiosks are the most inefficient option to buy tickets.  I have twice missed the train while waiting in line at the kiosk.  Once the mobile app was released, I never looked back!  Later updates to the mobile app included the ability to purchase multiple tickets and activate them as needed.  This is a great option for the recreational rider who wants a pay-as-you-ride system.  You can also purchase 7 day and 31 day Commuter passes on the app.

Other Changes

Thanks to a $50 million grant from TxDOT, which allows for the purchase of 4 new railcars and an upgrade to the Downtown Station, Capital Metro expects to increase the frequency of MetroRail trains to 15 minute intervals.  An additional $11.3 million, from Federal funds, will enable additional tracks to be added and some existing tracks to be improved.

 

Purchase using the Capital Metro Online Store.

Download the app:

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