The global pandemic shows that cities can afford to make public transport free of charge

Even with ridership down by 90 percent and fare collection suspended, public transportation is considered an essential service.
In recent weeks, the coronavirus pandemic has forced transit systems worldwide to suspend fare collection to keep workers and riders safe. These changes were implemented to protect the public in a crisis, but the idea that urban areas should provide at least some free public transit is not new—roughly 200 cities around the world already do.