Public transport fares to be paid with SUBE or debit cards

The presidential spokesperson announced that the two payment systems will coexist

Public transport users will be able to pay fares with their debit card or cellphone, Presidential spokesperson Manuel Adorni said in a press conference on Monday. The SUBE card will not disappear; only now it will become one of the available options. No timetable was given for when this will happen. 

The Herald reached out to the transport secretariat for more information regarding the timeline and what debit or credit card can be used, but they said they couldn’t provide any more details for the moment.

According to Adorni, the decision was made in line with what happens in other cities of the world. He added that the move will not only make things simpler but also turn transport payments into a “federal” system, given that in some parts of the country the SUBE system was never set up.

SUBE stands for Sistema Único de Boleto Electrónico (Unique Electronic Fare System). After being launched in 2011, it coexisted with cash payments for a few years as it replaced the old ticket machines in Buenos Aires and other cities. 

In 2023, the previous government started testing ways to allow paying fares by phone after a shortage of the plastic used to make the SUBE cards. The situation became a growing problem, given that it is currently the only way to pay for public transport in most cities.

Since April 1, users who haven’t registered their SUBE cards with their personal information have higher commute fares than registered users. You can still register it via a website. Read more about this here.

SUBE cards are available at certain kioscos, subway stations, and stores that sell lottery tickets for AR$880 (US$1 at the official rate). If you’ve recently arrived in Argentina and need one, here’s a map of all the places that sell them. If you can’t find it anywhere, you can also buy it online and have it sent to you, or retrieve it yourself at a SUBE point.


All Right Reserved.  Buenos Aires Herald