Upgrades Coming To TAP: Mobile App and Greater Multi-Modal Integration

Wearable TAP and TAP keychains coming soon. Image via Metro
Wearable TAP and TAP keychains coming soon. Image via Metro

Note: Metropolitan Shuttle, a leader in bus shuttle rentals, regularly sponsors coverage on Streetsblog San Francisco and Streetsblog Los Angeles. Unless noted in the story, Metropolitan Shuttle is not consulted for the content or editorial direction of the sponsored content.

Changes big and small are coming to Metro’s humble TAP fare card in the near future.

TAP already has a degree of multi-modal integration as it can be used for both transit – Metro and 24 other L.A. County municipal bus operators – and for Metro Bike Share. Metro bills its bike-share integration as the first of its kind ‘mobility as a service’ integration in the United States.

But that’s not all.

Coming this winter, Metro will debut a new TAP smartphone app that will integrate trip planning and transit fare payment. The app will enable people to pay transit fares by tapping one’s phone, or to easily load one’s TAP card. The app will integrate low-income fare subsidies, as well as discounts for students, seniors, and riders with disabilities. Metro Deputy Executive Officer Robin O’Hara demonstrated the new app at this morning’s Metro board Finance Committee meeting. O’Hara anticipates that TAP’s wallet feature will be expanded to pay for various things from e-scooters to parking to ride-hail.

The agency also plans to introduce TAP keychains and bracelets.

For a pilot starting next month, TAP cards will be on sale in at gift card racks in 7-Eleven, CVS pharmacies, and other stores.

Starting next month TAP cards will be on sale at more retail outlets - image via Metro presentation
Starting next month TAP cards will be on sale at more retail outlets – image via Metro presentation

It should not be too noticeable to riders, but this fall Metro is upgrading its bus farebox equipment for compatibility with TAP upgrades.

More information on the future of TAP at the Metro staff report and at Curbed.

  • kentschen

    Would TAP also be available on Apple Pay? Per this article from earlier this year: https://9to5mac.com/2019/01/25/apple-pay-la-metro/

  • Joe Linton

    I don’t know – they mentioned the new TAP-wallet feature would interface with PayPal and could connect to lots of other stuff – but I didn’t hear anything about Apple Pay specifically. You might ask Metro – perhaps tweet to @metrolosangeles

  • crazyvag

    It’s not Apple Pay, but just generic contactless support that’s needed if which Google Pay and Apple Pay are just one implementations of.

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