PITTSBURGH, Pa. (KDKA) — Bus riders faced long lines at the Port Authority Service Center on Monday as they prepare for new changes in 2020.
With 98 lines, the buses are always running and senior citizens are using the city’s various public transportation options for free.READ MORE: Former Pittsburgh Priest Accused Of Filming Boy In Target Bathroom
“I use it periodically. But more so in the wintertime, I ride the bus,” Ruth McCord told KDKA on Monday.
“I’m retired, but my wife rides the trolley, the T, and I’m on it periodically,” Jeff Kennedy said.
While both these seniors use this free service, they know state-mandated changes are on the way in 2020.
“Beginning Jan. 1st, Port Authority will no longer be accepting Medicare cards as free payment for seniors,” Adam Brandolph with Port Authority said.
Starting Jan. 1, seniors will need to show the driver a Senior Citizen ConnectCard for a free ride.
The Port Authority will also accept a blue or yellow PA Senior Transit ID cards.READ MORE: Kenny Pickett 'Undecided' On Whether He'll Play In Peach Bowl
“I’m sure there are a lot of people in their early 60s trying to save money and take someone else’s pass so I think the picture is good,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy was one of the dozens of seniors who waited until the last minute to get a new card.
He spent nearly an hour in line at the downtown service station Monday.
“We knew there would be some interest, we just weren’t expecting this much interest the day before New Year’s Eve,” Brandolph said.
The Downtown Service Center was the only location to get the free card on the same day.
But seniors have the option to apply at various legislative offices in the county for a 10-day turnaround.
They will need the card to ride for free starting Wednesday.MORE NEWS: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny County Reports 767 New Cases, 25 Additional Deaths
For more information, visit the Port Authority’s website.