is a MIFARE
-based, contactless, stored value smart card
used for electronic ticketing as part of the Automated Fare Collection (AFC) system installed by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority
(MBTA) at its stations and on its vehicles.
The last metal token was sold on December 6, 2006, at Government Center
The CharlieCard is named after a fictional character in a folk music
song often called "Charlie on the MTA
", which concerns a man trapped forever on the Boston subway system (then known as the Metropolitan Transit Authority, or MTA) because he can't pay the 5-cent surcharge required to leave the train.
Since the card's introduction, the Charlie character has been used on a variety of MBTA signs, including construction signage and for directing passengers to various locations.
The CharlieCard is named after the title character in the 1948
protest folk music
song, "Charlie on the MTA
". The song was written to protest a fare increase in the form of an extra five cent exit fare
for longer rides and was later made popular by the Kingston Trio
The CharlieCard can store value (keep a cash balance) and hold a combination of time-based passes which allow unlimited rides during a set period of time. Passengers use the plastic,......