Transit fare vending machines at bus and train stations around Baltimore will not accept credit cards for over a year while undergoing a software upgrade, the Maryland Department of Transportation said in a news release Monday.
The outage is expected to begin Friday and continue until December 2024 at Maryland Transit Administration bus, light rail and metro subway stations. Around 10% of fares purchased at the machines are by credit card, according to the department, and MARC train ticketing machines will not be impacted.
During the upgrade, machines will be able to accept cash only, according to the news release.
“The safety and security of our customers is paramount,” Maryland Transit Administrator Holly Arnold said in a release. “That includes customer transactions and information when paying for their fares.”
Transit officials said the department plans to install temporary vending machines capable of taking credit cards at high traffic stations sometime this spring. Riders can also pay fares with a credit card through the CharmPass mobile app or the transit story at 6 St. Paul St. downtown. New customers who download the app in October will receive a free three-day CharmFlex pass. The CharmPass and CharmFlex are about 15% cheaper than day pass fares, the department said.