Priority Pass Adds Elite Subway Access in New York City

Apr 1, 2018

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If you pay $450 or more for your premium credit card, there’s a pretty good chance it comes along with some sort of membership to Priority Pass, a network of airport lounges around the world.

While we don’t know exactly how many customers picked one up, there’s no question that the tremendous popularity of the Chase Sapphire Reserve card has resulted in a Priority Pass membership surge, even prompting some lounges to limit access during peak periods.

In order to keep up with demand, Priority Pass has had to think outside the box, adding restaurant dining credits to the list of membership perks. While some establishments are pretty “run of the mill,” such as Bobby Van’s Steakhouse at JFK, others rank among the world’s best — think Cleveland Airport’s Bar Symon, which just added its second Michelin star. (I hear the 10-course tasting menu is out of this world.)

Priority Pass has really outdone itself with this latest addition, though.

Beginning this week, members have access to New York City’s brand-new MTA Elite program, which otherwise requires a cash “executive contribution” of $15,000 or more. I took MTA Elite for a spin, and I have to say — my city finally has a transit program it can be proud of.

MTA Elite benefits include:

  • EliteCar access, normally restricted to Wall Street station-bound customers wearing bespoke suits
  • Four minutes of unlimited daily high-speed Wi-Fi access
  • Delay-based rewards — cash in a cumulative 100-minute delay for a $1 “street meat” discount voucher redeemable at hot-dog carts
  • Single-use 10% discount on one item from the “Brooklyn Surprise” menu at the New York Transit Museum’s TeaTime Train
  • Unscheduled live entertainment (various performances)

Elites can also take advantage of rush-hour XpressLanes, available at select stations:

Note that while MTA Elite offers an elevated subway experience, MetroCards are still required for access. Benefits are subject to change at any time, and some perks — such as live entertainment — may be available to standard riders from time to time.

Photography by Emily McNutt / The Points Guy. Oh… and happy April Fool’s Day, everyone!   

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