NYC subway ridership surpasses 1 billion for first time since 2019


The New York City subway carried more than 1 billion people this year, marking a major milestone in the Big Apple’s pandemic recovery.  

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) announced that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) served its billionth customer of the year on Tuesday morning.  

“We have been working hard to bring customers back by providing safer, cleaner, and faster service, and hitting one billion riders in 2022 is evidence that our work is paying off,” Hochul said. “New Yorkers and tourists alike continue to flock to the subway, proving there is no better way to get around New York City than mass transit.” 

On a typical weekday before the pandemic, the New York City subway transported more than 5 million people. But ridership plummeted in 2020 after COVID-19 reached the five boroughs, forcing businesses and schools to close.  

In March of that year, subway usage tapped in at only 12 percent of 2019 numbers, according to New York state data.

Tuesday’s subway ridership marks the first time the public transit system has served more than 1 billion customers in a year since 2019.  

“Just in time for the holiday season, serving one billion subways riders in 2022 is a milestone worth celebrating,” said New York City Transit President Richard Davey. “As we continue to follow our north star goal of giving customers the best possible experience and welcoming them back to transit, I commend the women and men of New York City Transit, who show up every single day to carry millions of New Yorkers and propel the city.” 

While officials lauded the number, the New York City subway is serving far fewer passengers compared to pre-pandemic days.  

The New York City subway carried 760 million customers last year and 640 million in 2020. And while officials lauded 2022’s numbers, the subway’s average daily ridership is still hovering at around 60 percent of what it was in 2019.  

That year, the public transit system served 1.698 billion riders, according to MTA data.  

Tags COVID-19 pandemic Gov. Kathy Hochul Kathy Hochul Metropolitan Transportation Authority New York City

Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

See all Hill.TV See all Video

Most Popular

Load more


See all Video