Commuter Assistance

The commuter assistance program allows you to have pre-tax deductions taken from your pay to cover eligible expenses associated with your daily commute to work such as public transportation and non-JHU parking.
In addition to any pre-tax money you set aside for commuting expenses, JHU provides a subsidy to eligible employees to help lessen the cost of commuting, support the university’s sustainability initiatives, and encourage vital in-person interactions.
People using trains and departure and arrival images
Employee Commuter Contributions

ELIGIBILITY

You are eligible for the JHU Commuter Assistance program if you are a full-time or part-time faculty, staff, or LiUNA bargaining unit member. Visiting faculty are not eligible for the benefit.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM

JHU’s commuter assistance program allows you to have pre-tax deductions taken from your pay to cover eligible expenses associated with your commute to work. You may elect a transit account, parking account, or both. You can make a one-time election to cover the same expenses each month, but if your commuting needs change, you can make changes to your elections every month. New elections will take effect the month after they are submitted.

The cost of the transit or non-JHU parking will be deducted from your paycheck over two pay periods.  Payroll deductions will be loaded into an account with WEX to use for public transit or non-JHU parking purchases.

WEX, our commuter assistance program administrator, offers a debit card to purchase transportation and non-JHU parking passes, or the ability to reimburse yourself. You may use your WEX debit card to purchase your transit pass or parking. Alternatively, you may pay out-of-pocket and reimburse yourself via the WEX mobile app.

WEX covers some commuting expenses, such as a WMATA SmarTrip card, directly–your money is loaded onto your SmarTrip card for you. A WEX debit card is also available. The debit card can be used to purchase MTA passes and tickets or to add funds to your MTA CharmPass. For other expenses, you will be required to pay out-of-pocket and request reimbursement from WEX.

If you park at a non-JHU garage or facility, the WEX debit card can be used to pay the facility directly.  If you park at a JHU facility and have your parking fee deducted from your paycheck, you automatically receive the pre-tax benefit.

Eligible Expenses

The following mass transit and parking expenses are eligible if they are related to your commute to work:

  • Train, Bus, and/or Metro fares
  • UberPOOL, Lyft Shared, and/or Vanpool fares
  • Parking at non-JHU owned lots near your JHU building
  • Parking at Metro or another mass transit site

The following expenses are not eligible: tolls, gas, airline flights, car-maintenance, taxis, and non-work related commuter costs. Parking on-site at a JHU lot or garage is already deducted from your paycheck pre-tax, and is therefore not eligible.

PRE-TAX COMMUTER ASSISTANCE LIMITS

The pre-tax deductions for qualified parking and public transit are excluded from your taxable income up to the limit imposed by the IRS. For the 2024 tax year, the monthly pre-tax limit for public transit is $315 and the limit for parking is also $315 each month.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

  • If you are full-time, you will make your elections within the myChoices Benefits enrollment portal. You will start a qualifying life event and select the Commuter Assistance Program option.
  • If you are part-time, email your monthly elections to benefits@jhu.edu.
  • Funds become available to you as they are deducted from each paycheck. Unused funds will rollover month-to-month and year-to-year.
  • If you already have a WEX debit card for your healthcare FSA, simply use the card you already have for your transit or parking expenses. Otherwise, check your mail for your new WEX debit card.
  • If you reimburse yourself in the WEX app, make sure to set up direct deposit with WEX so you do not have to wait for a check to be mailed to you. Receipts are not required to submit claims for commuter assistance.
JHU-Paid Transit Subsidy

ELIGIBILITY

JHU faculty, staff, and LiUNA bargaining unit members are eligible for the public transit subsidy if they:

  • Are full-time, benefit eligible employees;
  • Have a work address in Maryland or Washington, D.C.;
  • Earn a JHU gross salary of $150,000 or below per year; and
  • Work on campus/on site at least one day per week.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM

JHU offers a public transit subsidy to eligible JHU employees who work in Maryland and Washington, D.C.

Subsidy amounts are determined by an eligible employee’s work location (Maryland or D.C.), their annual JHU gross salary, and the number of days they work on campus/on site.

Based also on regional differences in commuting costs, eligible employees who work in Maryland can receive up to $60 per month, and eligible employees who work in Washington, D.C. can receive up to $150 per month.  Eligible employees who work in D.C can receive a parking subsidy up to $237 per month.  D.C. employees can only have one employer-funded account, transit OR parking.

Employees eligible for the public transit subsidy will receive funds in a pre-tax commuter account through WEX.  Funds will be added to your account the 1st pay of each month. When enrolling, you can also elect to make employee pre-tax contributions into your commuter account.  The combined maximum of employer and employee contributions cannot exceed the IRS limit of $315/month. Enrolled employees will purchase their mass transit passes using the WEX debit card, or they can be reimbursed directly through WEX.

Eligible Expenses

The following mass transit and parking expenses are eligible if they are related to your commute to work:

  • Train, Bus, and/or Metro fares
  • UberPOOL, Lyft Shared, and/or Vanpool fares

The following expenses are not eligible: tolls, gas, airline flights, car-maintenance, taxis, and non-work related commuter costs. 

JHU subsidy amounts

Monthly Public Transit Subsidy
Number of On-Site Days Each Week
Work Location 5 4 3 2 1 0
Maryland $60 $48 $36 $24 $12 $0
Washington, D.C. $150 $120 $90 $60 $30 $0

Note: If location or salary changes, increased or decreased amounts should be effective the 1st of the following month.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

  • You will make your elections within the myChoices Benefits enrollment portal.  Start a qualifying life event and select the Commuter Assistance Program option.
  • If you are eligible, you will have the option to select the JHU subsidy and/or elect your own pre-tax contribution. You do not need to make employee contributions to your commuter assistance account to receive the JHU-paid subsidy.
  • Employer funds will be added to your account the 1st pay of each month. Unused funds will rollover month-to-month and year-to-year.
  • If you already have a WEX debit card for your healthcare FSA, simply use the card you already have for your transit or parking expenses. Otherwise, check your mail for your new WEX debit card. You can also request reimbursement from WEX (online or app) if you pay out-of-pocket for any of your transit costs.
JHU-Paid Parking Subsidy (D.C. Only)

ELIGIBILITY

JHU faculty, staff, and LiUNA bargaining unit members are eligible for the JHU-paid parking subsidy if they:

  • Are full-time, benefit eligible employees;
  • Have a work address in Washington, D.C.
  • Park in a non-JHU owned lot or garage near their JHU building
  • Earn a JHU gross salary of $199,999 or below per year; and
  • Work on campus/on site at least two days per week.
For information about parking at a JHU-owned lot or garage, please visit JHU’s Transportation website.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM

JHU offers a parking subsidy to eligible JHU employees who work in Washington, D.C.

Parking subsidy amounts are determined by an employee’s annual JHU gross salary and the number of days they work on campus/on site.

Eligible employees who work in D.C can receive a parking subsidy up to $237 per month.  D.C. employees can only have one employer-funded account, transit OR parking.

Employees eligible for the JHU-paid parking will receive funds in a pre-tax commuter account through WEX.  Funds will be added to your account the 1st pay of each month. When enrolling, you can also elect to make employee pre-tax contributions into your commuter account.  The combined maximum of employer and employee contributions cannot exceed the IRS limit of $315/month. Enrolled employees will purchase their parking using the WEX debit card, or they can be reimbursed directly through WEX.

ELIGIBLE EXPENSES

The following mass transit and parking expenses are eligible if they are related to your commute to work:

  • Parking at non-JHU owned lots near your JHU building
  • Parking at Metro or another mass transit site

The following expenses are not eligible: non-work related commuter costs.

Parking on-site at a JHU lot or garage is already deducted from your paycheck pre-tax, and is therefore not eligible.

JHU Subsidy Amounts

Monthly Parking Subsidy – DC Work Locations ONLY
Salary Range 3 or More Days On-Site Each Week 2 Days On-Site Each Week
<$50,000 $237 $120
$50,000-59,999 $229 $120
$60,000-69,999 $220 $120
$70,000-79,999 $212 $120
$80,000-99,999 $195 $100
$100,000-124,999 $160 $80
$125,000-149,999 $120 $60
$150,000-199,999 $80 $0

Note: If location or salary changes, increased or decreased amounts should be effective the 1st of the following month.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

  • You will make your elections within the myChoices Benefits enrollment portal.  Start a qualifying life event and select the Commuter Assistance Program option.
  • If you are eligible, you will have the option to select the JHU subsidy and/or elect your own pre-tax contribution. You do not need to make employee contributions to your commuter assistance account to receive the JHU-paid subsidy.
  • Employer funds will be added to your account the 1stpay of each month. Unused funds will rollover month-to-month and year-to-year.
  • If you already have a WEX debit card for your healthcare FSA, simply use the card you already have for your transit or parking expenses. Otherwise, check your mail for your new WEX debit card. You can also request reimbursement from WEX (online or app) if you pay out-of-pocket for any of your transit costs.