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New Yorkers are giving up their unused MetroCards to essential workers

Shaye Weaver
Written by
Shaye Weaver

While most New Yorkers are hunkering down at home, essential workers like medical personnel and service employees are still stuck getting on the subway. To help support them, Good Samaritans are offering up their unlimited MetroCards.

Numerous Reddit users have chimed in on Astoria, Brooklyn and NYC threads with their cards and their expiration dates.

In r/nyc, userilovexspin wrote:

"Hey New Yorkers -

If your unlimited MetroCard has time left on it and you're now WFH with no intention of taking the subway - give your Metrocard to a local restaurant worker/ anyone near you who has to keep reporting to work via MTA but is likely going to face financial hardship during this time. Having access to an unlimited Metrocard for a few weeks can allow families to stock up on food that they usually wouldn't be able to."

Dozens have given up their card and nurses, restaurant workers, home aides and other essential workers have been responding, taking them up on their offers.

"Great, you're the first to respond," another user wrote in r/nyc. "Ok, here's the plan. There's a pinboard above the mailboxes in the lobby of my building. I'll wash my hands and lysol it, put it in an envelope and leave it there for you. You can buzz in and grab it. What time were you thinking?"

The gesture hasn't gone unappreciated. Many workers have expressed their gratitude.

"Essential employee reporting in- definitely could make use of an unlimited card if anyone seeing this has one they won't be using," user kit_cat_bar wrote in r/astoria.

"I’m still working as well, but just wanted to drop a big THANK YOU for thinking of others," ThaiChili wrote. "If more were like you guys, the world would be a better place! ❤️ to y’all and stay safe!"

You may want to consider helping if you don't plan on going anywhere (and you shouldn't). It’s not illegal to use your MetroCard to help another rider gain access to the system as long as you’re not charging for the swipe.

If you hand yours over, make sure to disinfect it before doing so. MetroCard recipients should also disinfect it as a precaution before using it, too.

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