Cashless transport payment trial to include Visa, Nets by 2018
A pilot that allows commuters to pay for their transport with contactless credit or debit cards will be extended to Visa and Nets 2.0 by June next year, said Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min.
He was addressing questions from MPs on the Government's plan for a cashless public transport system by 2020.
The account-based ticketing system, now available only for Mastercard users, allows commuters to track their transactions online or via a mobile app.
They are charged for rides in their credit or debit card bill.
More than 100,000 participants are on the system, with more than 50 per cent of cards used and registered from DBS Bank or POSB, said DBS head of cards and unsecured loans Anthony Seow.
Since its launch in March, there have been more than 60,000 transactions daily.
Dr Lam told the House that the account-based ticketing system will remove the hassle of doing cash top-ups.
"In fact, they should not need a Cepas card for transport payments," he said, referring to ez-link or Nets FlashPay cards.
Separately, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) yesterday said it will trial the use of mobile payment modes - such as Android Pay, Apple Pay and Samsung Pay - under the account-based ticketing system from the first quarter of next year.
Going cashless will help the Government save almost $20 million a year - the cost of maintaining cash facilities at MRT stations and buses, Dr Lam said.
Transition to the cashless payments will be done gradually, with attention focused on the "small minority of commuters who need further assistance".
For example, the LTA has deployed service agents to help commuters learn to use the ticketing machines at MRT stations.
Emphasising the need to embrace technological changes and "ride on the positive impacts" as a nation, Dr Lam said: "Procrastination will only delay the problem and make catching up even more challenging.
"So I think the best way to not leave anyone behind is to take the extra effort to bring everyone along this journey."