TTC riders are irate about chronically malfunctioning Presto readers

As the TTC’s rollout of its new Presto card readers and fare gates continues, Toronto’s public transit riders have discovered a new favourite pastime: complaining about the TTC’s new Presto card readers and fare gates.

It’s not that there’s anything intrinsically wrong with the new card readers. If they were always working properly, they’d be fine—great, even. But frequently the machines are broken: the card readers won’t read, or the card loaders won’t load. The TTC estimates that 8 to 10 per cent of Presto readers are out of order at any given time, and the problem has become such an irritant that the commission recently ordered TTC staff to produce a report on the amount of revenue that has been lost as a result of riders not being able to pay their fares. (They hope to recoup the difference from Metrolinx, Presto’s operator.)

As one would probably expect, Twitter has become the main bile duct for Presto hate. Here’s what people are saying.

There are lots of people out there who are pissed that they can’t use their cards:

A generation of transit riders will never again trust fare gates:

Sick burn, right here:

And of course, there are some accessibility concerns:

But a large contingent of people—maybe even a slim majority—are taking grim satisfaction in Presto’s technical glitches, because it means they get free rides:

Some people are downright psyched when their Presto card won’t tap:


Yup, it’s a real money-saver (but try not to think about the hundreds of millions of dollars of public money spent developing and installing this malfunctioning fare system):

Praise the lord:

So true:

Presto glitches are so reliable that they’ve become a legitimate household budgeting strategy:

In conclusion:



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