Crowding Information for Riders
To keep riders informed during the COVID-19 outbreak, we are piloting crowding information for bus and subway. There are two types of crowding information available:
We describe crowding in three categories based on current social distancing standards on our vehicles: Not crowded, Some crowding, and Crowded.
We are monitoring usage and feedback and will modify these categories as public health conditions change. For example, a standard bus with 20 riders is currently labeled as "Crowded," but might not be considered crowded when social distancing becomes less necessary and the MBTA adjusts its crowding definitions.
Bus Real-time Crowding
Real-time crowding information is available all day, every day for most MBTA bus routes. For each route, our Customer Technology team verifies the accuracy of crowding information through manual passenger counts.
For some routes, crowding information may not be available yet, or may only be available on certain days or times:
Routes 4, 39, 55, 57, 59, 60, 65, 66, 90, 94, 95, 96, 97, 100, 105, 106, 108, 131, 134, 136, 137, 193, 354, 411, 430, 501, 504, 553, 554, 556, 558, CT2, and CT3
Routes 71 and 73
Routes 34 and 34E
How to Use Bus Crowding Information
Crowding information is now available on our website, on certain digital signs, and within the Transit app.
Visit the schedule page for any route the information is available for, and then tap or click the vehicle icon on the map or the line diagram.
You might also see E Ink screens that predict crowding levels on the buses scheduled to arrive.
Subway Crowding Trends
Crowding trends are available for the Red Line, Orange Line, and Blue Line and are updated weekly. These trends are estimated based on previous ridership and current social distancing guidance. They are subject to change.
How to Use Subway Crowding Trends
Use the tool below to see recent crowding levels on the subway. We recommend traveling outside of the peak travel times whenever possible.
Real-time crowding is a new data source we developed in direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Crowding data is now available on the majority of MBTA bus routes, and we’re working on technical improvements that should allow us to release it on more.
Subway and Commuter Rail
Live crowding data for the subway and Commuter Rail isn’t available yet. Additionally, because our data is based on fare card taps at station faregates, crowding information is not available for Green Line and Mattapan Trolley.
Check back here for updates and to see weekly crowding trends for the Red, Orange, and Blue lines.
Get the latest updates on service changes related to COVID-19.