Metro looks to replace SmarTrip

Metro is searching for vendors to develop a new, chip-enabled fare system, but a University spokeswoman said there is no prospect for a GWorld-compatible card.

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority revealed plans to create the “next generation of electronic fare payments” in a news release just before January, incorporating chip-enabled debit and credit cards that will be capable of installation into federal identification cards, smart phones and existing SmarTrip cards.

University spokeswoman Michelle Sherrard said GW has no plans to integrate Metro capabilities into GWorld cards.

“Our technology needs are different than the technology needs required for SmarTrip cards,” Sherrard said.

In April, neighboring American University rolled out student identification cards equipped with Metro payment capabilities.

The new system and chip technology will process payments directly at the gate, eliminating the need for fare cards or a SmarTrip card.

WMATA plans to keep the SmarTrip system – with more than 1.8 million cards currently active – fully functional until the new payment system is put in place.

“Just as SmarTrip revolutionized how customers paid their fares a decade ago, we look for this new system to be equally dramatic in the eyes of our customers,” Metro board Chairman Peter Benjamin said.

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