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PRESTO contactless payment options now available on UP Express

Screenshot_2021-03-15 PRESTO contactless.pngMetrolinx says it’s taking an “important first step to bring more payment options to transit [passengers] across the region.”

Since Thursday, March 11, you can use your physical credit card or the credit card in your mobile wallet to pay for your fare on UP Express as part of a pilot.

Screenshot_2021-03-15 PRESTO tap on.png

For the same price as the PRESTO adult fare, you can tap on a PRESTO device with a Visa, Mastercard or American Express credit card — or your phone or watch with a mobile wallet like Apple Pay or Google Pay.

Just like with other contactless payment systems across the world, you should take the card you want to pay with out of your wallet, purse or phone case when tapping onto a PRESTO device to pay. This avoids a situation called “card clash” and ensures the correct payment method is charged.

Screenshot_2021-03-15 PRESTO tap off.png

You also have to tap on and off in the same way. If you tap on with your credit card, you must tap off with the same credit card. If you tap on with your phone or watch, you must tap off with the same phone or watch, using the same card you set up in your mobile wallet.

You can also pre-set your preferred credit card in a mobile wallet on your phone (or watch) for easy access and use anytime you feel like using credit as a payment method.

During a fare inspection, your proof of payment is the same credit card or mobile wallet you used to pay your fare. If you tap the wrong card for a fare inspection, your card will be charged an inspection fare.

Screenshot_2021-03-15 PRESTO proof of payment.png

While you can tap most credit cards on PRESTO devices to pay, the devices don’t accept some physical credit cards for security reasons specific to transit systems. Any passengers experiencing an issue with their physical card can add their card to their mobile wallet on their phone or watch to ensure they can pay on a PRESTO device.

For Apple users, PRESTO recommends using an iPhone X or newer.

New PRESTO devices at UP Express’s Union, Bloor, Weston and Pearson Airport stations all now accept PRESTO contactless payment.

PRESTO is testing these new payment options with UPX passengers before it rolls out the new payment options across the region. This spring, PRESTO plans to add Interac Debit as an option to pay for travel on UP Express. Metrolinx says that this is the first time a transit agency in Canada will offer a Canadian contactless debit option.

Credit card with blue PRESTO device.jpg

^ You need to take the card want to pay with out of your wallet or phone case when you tap, to make sure you charge the right card.

(All images: Metrolinx)


  • Metrolinx news blog post, “PRESTO contactless payment pilot launches on UP Express, allowing customers to ‘tap-on’ with credit cards and mobile wallets”, by Brandon Bernard, Metrolinx communications planning senior advisor, here.
  • PRESTO: “Contactless payment”, here.
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