Metrobus riders are going to see a big change in the new year. Starting Sunday, riders will once again board from the front of the bus and they will have to pay.
But amid an ongoing pandemic that has cost thousands their jobs, the return of bus fares is frustrating for many D.C.-area residents.
One of them is Nana, who lost her job caring for the elderly.
“I don’t have a job, and you say I’m going to pay? I go to the food pantry to eat," she said. "How do people go about their business to get food if you don’t have money? You need the bus."
The bus is Nana’s only way around, and she’s asking Metro to change its decision on bringing back bus fares.
“A lot of people are not going to pay. If they don’t have money what do you expect them to do? They need to go to the doctor’s— what do you expect them to do?”
Metro said it needs to get back to collecting revenue from riders — over 100,000 trips a day are still being taken during the pandemic.
Nana said bus fares should be free until everybody is employed.
“That $600 they are giving is nothing," she said. "There’s going to be trouble at the bus stations because people aren’t going to pay. We don’t have the money.”