Your AirTrain commutes to JFK and Newark Airport terminals are poised to get more expensive soon.
To support infrastructure, and rising construction costs, the Port Authority announced a proposal to increase the fares of both AirTrains, as well as bridge and tunnel tolls, PATH Train fares, in addition to levying an access fee on for-hire vehicles picking-up and dropping passengers at the airport.
Under the proposal, both airport AirTrain fees to will jump to $7.75, a 55 percent increase from their current $5 price. The new fare will take effect on November 1, 2019, and is the first increase on the JFK line since 2003. The Newark AirTrain fare was previously hiked in 2005.
The new “airport ground transportation access fee” will cost for-hire vehicles, which includes app-based services and taxis, a $4 fee, each, for pick-ups and drops, at Newark, LaGuardia, and JFK Airport. The fee will be exempted for taxis during drop offs. This policy is adopted from similar fees that are levied on vehicles at airports in Los Angeles, and San Francisco.
The NY Taxi Workers Alliance said this fee is harmful, and that they would be willing to “shut down the airports,” as reported in NBC New York.
A $10 billion investment program to fortify, and rebuild, commuter bridges will result in increased tolls at Holland Tunnel, Lincoln Tunnel, George Washington Bridge, Bayonne Bridge, Goethals Bridge, and Outerbridge Crossing across peak, and off-peak hours.
E-ZPass fares will increase to $13.75 from $12.50 during peak hours, and to $11.75 from $10.50 during off-peak hours. Cash fares will increase to $16 from $15. Toll changes will take effect on January 5, 2020.
The E-ZPass discount reduction is because its usage has reached high levels (over 85%) and no longer warrants an incentive, according to Port Authority officials.
Carpool discount will also be eliminated, in order to maintain safety with the new cashless toll system, Port Authority officials stated. Vehicles making 10 or more trips per month will qualify for discounted tolls, up from the current number of three.
Staten Island Representative Max Rose tweeted in opposition of the hikes. “Staten Island is being singled out, ripped off, and screwed over,” he said.
Single-ride PATH Rail fares will not be increased. However, discounts on multi-trip fares are set for a reduction starting November 1, 2019. In 2020, they will face an, “inflation-based adjustment mechanism.” This will increase the current 7-day pass—which now costs $29—to $34.50 in 2019, and $36 in 2020.
Six public hearings are scheduled to get input on the proposed plans, starting July 16th. Three each, will be held in New York, and New Jersey. Comments can be submitted via the Port Authority website. These new plans are set to aid Governor Andrew Cuomo’s $13 billion JFK overhaul plan, and new AirTrains for LaGuardia and Newark.
“We look forward to hearing from the public on the proposals announced today which build on the work of previous boards and are necessary to maintain our commitment to transforming legacy assets into modern, world-class facilities capable of meeting 21st century expectations,” said Port Authority Chairman Kevin O’Toole.