During the early months of the pandemic ridership on NJ Transit buses and trains dropped by 95% but it’s been slowly improving ever since last summer.

NJ Transit President and CEO Kevin Corbett said about a month ago trains heading into New York on weekdays were at about 25% of capacity but now they’re up around 50% and the weekends are even better.

“On the rail side, we see it on the weekends. This last weekend we were up to 80, 85% of pre-pandemic,” he said.

Corbett pointed out with theatre and other attractions in New York opening back up, “it shows people want to go out and party and have fun. The fact that it’s only 50 to 60% going into work there, that tells you maybe they are not in such a rush to go back to work.”


Corbett said similar rail ridership increases are been seen for travelers heading into Philadelphia, and bus ridership has also increased, from about 55 to 65% of pre-pandemic levels for in-state trips.

He noted rail ridership down the shore is also increasing.

He noted masks are still required on trains and buses (as well as airplanes) and compliance has been good.

He also pointed out bus drivers and train conductors are giving frequent reminders about the ongoing transportation mask mandate to make sure passengers are aware the requirement is still in effect.

“We look forward to the day that can be reversed,” he said. “But we’ve had no major problems with that.”

Corbett added moving forward, with more people turning to mass transit to get to work, concerts and other activities, “we are very excited about getting people out of their cars particularly as traffic is building, get them back and I think they’ll see it’s a significantly better New Jersey Transit.”

You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com

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