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Guide for Contractors and Suppliers

Updated Jun 13, 2023

The MTA and its agencies — MTA New York City Transit, the MTA Long Island Rail Road, the MTA Metro-North Railroad, MTA Bridges and Tunnels, and the MTA Staten Island Railway — run the subways, buses, commuter railroads, and interborough toll crossings that keep the New York region moving. To provide our services, we rely on a broad range of contractors and suppliers who work with us through the procurement process. The goods and services we purchase are crucial to providing safe, reliable travel for our customers.

MTA is engaged in a multiyear project to consolidate our procurement processes. The My MTA Portal allows vendors to search for public bid events across all agencies, submit bid documents electronically, and perform other self-service tasks. Learn more about My MTA Portal.

To make it easier for you to do business with the MTA, we have prepared this page to assist you in detailing your products and services. We strongly encourage certified minority and women-owned businesses (M/WBE), service-disabled veteran-owned businesses (SDVOB), disadvantaged businesses (DBE), and small businesses to pursue contracts and compete for MTA business opportunities.

Feel free to contact MTA Procurement offices directly to find out their needs or ask questions about their procurement policies.

What does the MTA buy, and from whom?

Some of the MTA's procurements are for complex, specialized transportation equipment. But like any large company we also need office supplies, consulting services, paint, uniforms—practically anything you can think of. We buy from small vendors and multinational corporations.

View MTA's purchasing needs.

Is selling to the MTA complicated?

No more than doing business with any large corporation. Each contract is detailed and contains specifications and requirements that vendors must meet.

Will I be paid promptly for my work?

Yes. The MTA adheres to strict New York State regulations requiring that, generally, vendors be paid within 30 days for services or goods. We know how vital it is to be able to predict cash flow, and we want to make doing business with us as productive as possible.

How do I become a vendor to the MTA?

My MTA Portal is where you can register to become a vendor to the MTA. You may also submit a paper form to get on the Bidders List, a computerized record of vendors who supply the goods and services we often need. It's important to know that even though your firm's name is placed on a Bidders List, this doesn't guarantee that you'll automatically receive a solicitation to bid every time the kinds of goods or services you provide are needed. To be sure that you're aware of opportunities to bid on MTA contracts, search the New York State Contract Reporter and New York-area newspapers for advertisements of upcoming bid opportunities.

How will I hear about upcoming opportunities?

The Primary Source: the "New York State Contract Reporter"

All advertised bid solicitations appear in the New York State Contract Reporter. For subscription information, write or call: New York State Contract Reporter, 


Consult our Website

MTA agencies and headquarters frequently post bid solicitations on this website.

My MTA Portal for vendors is where you can search for public Procurement Events across all agencies. Once registered, you can submit bid documents electronically using the portal and perform other self-service tasks.

How does the procurement process work?

We solicit bids and proposals in three ways:

  1. Informal Solicitation

    When we're buying goods and services for under $10,000, we often contact vendors for bids by telephone or email, rather than advertise. We turn to Bidders Lists and other sources to locate qualified suppliers.

  2. Invitation for Bid (IFB)

    An IFB is used to obtain bids when a contract is competitively bid. Vendors submit bids that are opened in a public meeting at the location, date, and time specified in the IFB. The contract is awarded to the qualified vendor submitting the lowest bid. IFBs are usually for goods or trade services, such as computer hardware and construction. IFBs over $100,000 are advertised; suppliers on the Bidders List may be notified by mail or by telephone.

  3. Request for Proposal (RFP)

    We send RFPs to obtain proposals when a contract is competitively negotiated. A selection committee evaluates the proposals and, based on the selection criteria set forth in the RFP, negotiates with proposers before making a selection and awarding a contract. RFPs are typically for professional services(economic consulting, systems design, management services, architectural and engineering services) and major equipment purchases such as rolling stock.

Who is my contact at the MTA?

The MTA agencies and MTA Headquarters maintain specialized departments to conduct the procurement process.

How does the MTA decide who gets a contract?

The procedures for making contract awards differ, depending on whether the contract is based on an informal solicitation, an IFB, or an RFP. Informal solicitations usually are awarded based on the lowest quote but may specify another basis for award.

IFBs are awarded to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder. This means that while competitive price is the critical factor, the MTA will also determine if the lowest bidder can responsibly fulfill the contract. Delivery performance, quality, and ability to meet bid specifications are all important considerations in evaluating a bidder's level of responsiveness.

For contracts based on RFPs, a number of criteria are considered. These are specified for each contract and may include competitive pricing, demonstrated ability to fulfill the contract, quality of samples, previous experience, and contract performance. The MTA may choose to negotiate with one or more vendors as part of the RFP process