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Single card studied for airports, subways, buses

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"The Port Authority will partner with NJ Transit to undertake an eight-month pilot test to allow customers to use contactless bank cards, key fobs, cell phones and other devices to pay transit fares," the Port Authority said.

The agency said "the test will help determine if customers could ultimately use these devices to pay fares on all of the region's transit system, including New York City subways and buses."

The Port Authority board of commissioners authorized an agreement with MasterCard Worldwide and NJ Transit to develop and test on what was called a "tap" payment card and other devices at all 13 Port Authority Trans Hudson train stations and on two connecting NJ Transit bus routes.

The pilot program is to begin in early 2009 after MasterCard develops, installs and tests the system.

The announcement came Thursday during a board meeting of the Port Authority in Manhattan.

William DeCota, aviation director of the Port Authority, reported to the board on plans to lessen delays at LaGuardia, John F. Kennedy International and Newark Liberty airports.

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