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Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority Serving Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties

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SEPTA Reminds Riders of Medicare Card Phase Out Effective Jan. 16

Riders Eligible for Free & Reduced Fare Rides Are Transitioning to SEPTA Key

December 15, 2017

PHILADELPHIA (December 15, 2017) - SEPTA would like to remind riders that Medicare Cards will no longer be accepted for free-and reduced-fare rides as of Jan. 16, 2018. SEPTA had initially announced this would take effect Jan. 1, however, it has been extended two weeks to give riders additional time to prepare.

The phase-out of Medicare Cards is part of the transition to the SEPTA Key. It was part of the fare tariffs that were approved by the SEPTA Board and went into effect July 1. Many senior citizens and riders with disabilities have already transitioned to new SEPTA Key Photo ID Cards, ensuring they will continue to receive eligible free and reduced fares without interruption. SEPTA has issued 90,000 SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID Cards, and nearly 15,000 SEPTA Key Reduced Fare Photo ID Cards for riders with disabilities.

Senior Citizens
With a valid ID, senior citizens age 65 and older ride free at all times on all SEPTA Transit Routes (Bus, Trolley, Trackless Trolley, Broad Street/Broad Ridge Spur Line, Market Frankford Line/Norristown High Speed Line). In addition, seniors pay just a $1 fare on Regional Rail for travel within Pennsylvania, and receive 50 percent off the weekday fare for travel to/from New Jersey and Delaware.

As of Jan. 16, 2018:

  • Medicare Cards and Railroad Retirement Cards will no longer be accepted for senior rides.
  • SEPTA will continue to accept Pennsylvania Driver/Non-Driver Licenses with magnetic stripes.
  • Paper Senior Citizen Transit ID Cards will also continue to be accepted for senior rides until further notice.


Seniors who have not yet signed up to get their new SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID Card can do so at the local offices of their state senators and representatives, or at SEPTA Headquarters, 1234 Market Street, Philadelphia. Same-day cards can also be issued at SEPTA Headquarters and at Suburban Station's Accessible Travel Center weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

To receive a SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID Card, applicants must fill out an application and show one of the following forms of identification: Pennsylvania Driver/Non-Driver License; Birth Certificate; Baptismal Certificate; Yellow PACE Card (Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract for the Elderly); Statement of Age Verification from the U.S. Social Security Administration; Armed Forces Discharge/Separation Papers; Resident Alien Card; Passport/Naturalization Papers. For more information or questions about the SEPTA Key Senior Photo ID, visit http://www.septa.org/fares/discount/seniors-ride-free-info.html, or call SEPTA Customer Service at (215) 580-7800.
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Riders With Disabilities
Disabled riders will continue to be eligible to receive half off fares with valid ID. The new SEPTA Key Reduced Fare Card allows riders to load funds to the card's Travel Wallet for tap-and-go payment on all SEPTA Transit Routes (Bus, Trolley, Trackless Trolley, Broad Street/Broad Ridge Spur Line, Market Frankford Line/Norristown High Speed Line). On Regional Rail, riders show the SEPTA Key Reduced Fare Card and pay half-fare, as they have with Medicare Cards and paper Pennsylvania Reduced Transit Fare ID Cards.

As of Jan. 16, 2018:

  • Riders will not be able to use Medicare Cards to receive half-fare.
  • Paper Pennsylvania Reduced Transit Fare ID Cards will continue to be accepted for half-fare until further notice.


SEPTA urges eligible riders who have not registered for a SEPTA Key Reduced Fare Card to do so as soon as possible. Applications can be downloaded and printed from SEPTA's website at http://www.septa.org/fares/discount/disabled-id.html. Bring the completed application, Medicare Card (if applicable) and a valid, state-issued ID to SEPTA Headquarters or the Accessible Travel Center at Suburban Station to receive a new SEPTA Key Reduced Fare Card. Those with questions about the SEPTA Reduced Fare program should call SEPTA CCT Customer Service at (215) 580-7145.

For general information about the SEPTA Key fare modernization project, including a detailed FAQ, please visit http://www.septa.org/key/index.html.