They're the riders costing the MTA a bundle, boarding buses and entering the subway without a MetroCard swipe.

There are 550,000 transit farebeaters every day, according to alarming new figures from the MTA.

"Let's cut straight to the chase: We estimate for 2018, the revenue loss to fare evasion to be 215 million dollars, which is a huge amount in anyone's terminology," said NYC Transit President Andy Byford.

That's nearly double the $110 million loss in 2015.

Transit officials say fare beating has spiked in the last year, after Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance ordered his office to stop prosecuting most turnstile jumpers.

"That is a quite striking correlation," Byford said.

A spokesman for Vance said fare evasion prosecutions accomplish next to nothing and that the criminal justice system isn't a collection agency.

MTA officials say more than half of the farebeating losses now occur on buses. Many cheats simply walk through the front doors, past drivers who are now instructed not to confront offenders - to avoid assaults on drivers, which have been on the rise.

"It's a lot more complex than just saying to our operators, 'You must stop that happening.' Clearly, we owe then a duty of care, we can't put our operators at risk,” Byford said.

MTA officials say the farebeating is adding more stress to the agency's finances, which are suffering because of a steep decline in riders.

The MTA projects a budget shortfall of almost $1 billion by 2022, even with a fare hike proposed for next year.

The shortfall is so large, officials Monday warned they might have to cut back on cleaning and reduce heating and air conditioning in subway cars to save money.

Riders say they're frustrated at paying a full fare, only to see so many others choose to give themselves a free ride.

"People go through the back. I mean, where's the cops when you need them?" One commuter said.

"I work and I pay, and I feel when I see other people sneaking on, that they should pay as well. But at the same time, I do understand that some people are having financial difficulties," another added.

But by not paying, fare beaters are just adding to the financial difficulties of the MTA.