Accidental train robbery

mtasign070905.jpgLast summer, on one of my first ever LA Metro rides, I stupidly succumbed to peer pressure and didn’t buy a ticket. (If anyone says you don’t need one, because “they never check,” that person is wrong. I see MTA police checking for tickets all the time.) Instead of buying that $1.25 ticket, I ended up paying a $110 fine.

Since then, I’ve been trying to follow all the subway rules. But last night when I visited the MTA website to check the times for getting to Wilshire/Western, I noticed it showed the fare as $2.50. I was confused at the doubled price until I realized it was because I’d be switching trains. In NYC, once you pay the fare, you can ride as much as you want until you leave the system. Until yesterday, I treated the LA Metro as if it worked the same way, but here a one way ticket is only good for “a single boarding on a single Metro Rail line.”

Ooops. I’ve done the free-transfer thing a ton of times, so I guess I’m just lucky I didn’t get busted again. I would’ve been a repeat offender, which I think involves a giant fine and community service. From now on, I’ll stick with the $3 day pass to be sure I’m nice and legal.

An unrelated plea to my fellow Metro riders: If you see me on the subway, please don’t offer me candy. I like candy as much as the next girl (unless the next girl is Cybele), but I find it very creepy when strangers offer it to me on the train. Yesterday wasn’t the first time this happened, but it was the first time someone offered me the lollipop he was already eating. Yuck.

4 Replies to “Accidental train robbery”

  1. Yeah, this one-fare/one-ride MTA program (which has been in effect for well more than a year I think) replaced a previous system where you could tack a quarter onto a one-way fare for a transfer that would allow you to board another train or bus within a certain time frame, usually no more than a couple/three hours. When this new plan was implemented the MTA was crowing about reducing the one-way fare by a dime to $1.25 but made very little noise about the elimination of transfers. Their “all day” pass for $3 is a money saver if you take two or more lines to and from your destination, but I still miss the $1.60 it used to cost for one-way ride and a transfer to a second line.

  2. Ew, that is so gross. Anyway, I think what you learned in kindergarten is perfectly relevant here regarding candy and strangers.

  3. About the one-way fare… When the police check your ticket on the train or platform, they merely check the time/date of the ticket to see if it’s older than an hour or so, not the point of origin, which I believe isn’t printed on the ticket anyway.
    So, it’s feasible for you to switch directions on the Red Line and nobody would any the wiser, provided you do it within a relatively brief time period.
    Personally, I think it’s asinine to charge someone AGAIN to go up two stations on a spur of the same line.

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