Enrollment & Termination

If you do not have a SmarTrip card and this is your first time enrolling in the program you can receive a free card from Payroll Services. SmarTrip cards are distributed at Faculty & Staff Service Center (FSSC) or in Payroll Services at Research Place on the VSTC. You may also use one you presently own or purchase one directly from a Metro station or online at WMATA.

Before you can enroll in SmartBenefits your SmarTrip card MUST be registered in your name through WMATA. The process requires you to create an online account with WMATA and then add the card to your account. It only takes a few minutes to register your SmarTrip card online.

You may begin using your SmarTrip card immediately by adding money to your card at any Metro fare card machine or online at WMATA.  To enroll or change your monthly amount in the Pre-tax Transit and or Metro Parking Benefit Plan you must complete the SmartBenefits Enrollment/Change Form (PDF) and submit it to Payroll Services (instructions are included on the form).  We also offer SelectPass as a SmartBenefits option. Metro SelectPass allows you to ride Metrorail for one low monthly price for all of your regular commuting trips.

SelectPass can be purchased with your SmartBenefits through WMATA on or after the 1st of the month, manually, each month or you can select auto reload to automatically receive a new pass when the old pass expires. For more information on SelectPass and to determine if it is right for you, please refer to the WMATA website.

You may enroll, change or terminate the benefit any time during the year by completing a new form and following participation deadlines. 

Participation Deadlines

Monthly paid employees: New enrollments, changes or terminations must be received by the 10th of the month in order for the benefit to be available the first day of the following month.

Bi-Weekly paid employees: New enrollments, changes or terminations must be received two weeks prior to the first pay of the month in which the deduction is effective. The deductions are only taken the first two pay periods of a month and are available the first day of the following month. Bi-weekly paid employees may not terminate their benefits after the first deduction of the month has been processed.

Non-Benefit Eligible Employees

The SmartBenefits program has been expanded to include part-time, student and temporary employees who are otherwise not eligible for benefits. The participation and form submission guidelines are the same as those for benefited employees, however the funding schedule differs.  New enrollments, deduction changes and termination requests for monthly paid non-benefit eligible employees must be received by the 10th of the month in order for the benefit to be available on the first day of the second month.  Bi-weekly paid non-benefit eligible employees must submit their enrollment, change or termination forms no later than two weeks prior to the first pay of the month in order for the benefit to be available on the first day of the second month.  For example, deductions taken in the month of January for both monthly and bi-weekly paid employees will be available for use on March 1.

Reassignments (Transferring funds from old card to the new)

Employees can login to their WMATA account and use the self-service option to reassign the SmartBenefits. Both your stored value and any remaining SmartBenefits will be transferred to your replacement card. 

Allocations: If you allocate benefits to third-parties to purchase MARC, VRE or MTA Commuter Bus passes, or use a vanpool or MetroAccess, then WMATA will send you an email with important instructions on how to maintain your allocation

PASSES: Unused transit pass benefits will be automatically transferred to your replacement card’s Smartrip Online account. However, if you are due a refund for a lost pass purchased with transit pass benefits, then you must contact your Smartrip Administrator by emailing [email protected] to manually reassign the refund to your replacement card.

How a Participant Performs a Self-Service Balance Transfer/Reassignment

1. Log in to your SmarTrip account

2. Click on the lost/damaged card on the Your Account page

3. Click Update Card Information to view the registered card name.

 4. Decide on a Replacement Card

  •  If you haven’t already added a card that has not been previously received SmartBenefits, then purchase a card; go to the Your Account page; click “Add SmarTrip® Card”, or;
  •  Order your replacement card by mail under the “Report Lost or Damaged Card” process
  • The registered first and last name on the replacement card must match the name on the lost/damaged card. (The card nickname is not the registered name.)

5. Click “Report Lost or Damaged Card” on the Card Summary

 6. Follow the instructions and prompts to complete the transfer/reassignment