MBTA riders will see a little bit of financial reprieve this spring. Riders who buy monthly passes will see a 15 percent discount in May. The transit system will also offer riders a day of free fares, on Friday, April 24.
The 15 percent discount on monthly passes will also apply to weekly passes in May, according to MBTA spokesperson Joe Pesaturo.
The MassDOT Board of Directors, the T’s governing body, voted in favor of the plan Wednesday. It’s a nod to riders, after an awful winter storm season brought days and days of cancellations, delays, and lower-than-usual capacity.
The MassDOT board had batted around a few discount or refund ideas, including a free-fare week or a 15 percent discount on monthly and weekly passes.
Any refund or discount system costs the T, which happens to be locked in a perpetual cash pinch. The approved plan will come at an estimated cost of $5 million in lost revenues, The Boston Globe’s Nicole Dungca reports. But Secretary of Transportation Stephanie Pollack said it threaded the area between the the rock of financial strain and the hard place of not giving disgruntled commuters a thing.
Pollack: The "$5 million investment, the acknowledgement of our riders, and investment in rebuilding ridership strikes the right balance.”— Nicole Dungca (@ndungca) March 11, 2015
The board’s vote was unanimous.