SmarTrip Cards: Your Ticket to Ride (Updated)

Metro train in tunnel. Photo by Josh Hallett (Flickr: Josh Hallett).

Update: After the ISWNE Winter board meeting, the decision was made to move away from the Metrocards to buses for our two main trips. We will not be issuing the metrocards. However, you may still find a need for one, either getting from the airport or getting around town on Friday evening, a dinner-on-your-own day.

ISWNE Conferees will get SmarTrip cards with their conference registrations at ISWNE DC 2017 (it’s about a $60 value, so you’ll want to keep it safe once you get it). As we move from place to place, we’ll have people ready to help out-of-towners stay with the pack, but you might find yourself going off without us (on purpose, I hope) at some point.

Metro personnel tell us that the card works for a week starting with the first day that it is used. We’ll use it on Thursday June 29 to go to the U.S. Capitol and Library of Congress, so the pass should be good through Wednesday July 5. You can use it to get downtown for the July 4 fireworks, if you stay in DC for that.

[Dual-Sidebar: 1: We will stay at the University of Maryland, College Park campus, but they cannot allow people to stay after our Sunday July 2 departure. If you plan to stay in DC for the big holiday, book that hotel now! 2: Metro is undergoing some changes, so there is a chance the card and what it gets us will change somewhat. I’ll keep you informed. –Steve Thurston]

You might want to take the train from the airport to College Park, and if so, you might need your own SmarTrip card. Purchasing kiosks are confusing, so you might want to look at this video from the Washington Metropolitan Transportation Authority (WMATA). It’s cute and lasts a couple minutes. It shows you how to buy and refill a card. If you stay long enough, you might have to refill the card from us!

[Final Sidebar: Metro used paper “Farecards” for years. If you have used them in the past, remember that fondly, if you wish, but I’m sorry that they have been phased-out.]



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