Metro has taken steps toward making SmarTrip cards more user-friendly for consumers. By the end of the year, the transit agency plans to have a system in place to allow riders to access their riding history online, enabling users to more easily write off travel costs on expense reports and tax returns, the Washington Examiner reported.
The change will allow registered SmarTrip users to keep track of those expenses online, rather than having to request hard copies of those records from Metro. The agency estimates it will save $6,000 per year in time spent making those records.
The Examiner reports that Metro also plans to allow SmarTrip users to add money to their fare cards online and at fare boxes, rather than only being able to add value at fare dispensing machines.
These changes come as part of a push for more riders to use plastic SmarTrip cards instead of using cash for buses and disposable paper cards for trains.
Metro expects to have all these changes in place by the end of 2010; however, these improvements could soon be overshadowed. Metro has said they plan to eventually phase out SmarTrip cards and let riders pay with bank cards directly at fare boxes.