SINGAPORE: The 26-year-old CashCard, used for electronic road pricing (ERP) and car park charges, is being phased out as the Network for Electronic Transfers (NETS) introduces a new stored value card.
Introduced on Monday (Mar 23), the NETS Motoring card is compliant with the Contactless e-Purse Application (CEPAS) standard and “aims to meet the needs of motorists now and in the future”, said NETS.
The NETS Motoring card will “eventually replace” the CashCard for all car park and ERP charges, said a NETS spokesperson in response to queries.
In line with this, the CashCard will only be available at petrol stations and the NETS Customer Service Centre at Central Plaza on Tiong Bahru Road from Apr 5.
Meanwhile the new NETS Motoring card - which costs S$10, inclusive of S$5 in stored value - is now available at petrol stations, convenience stores as well as the NETS Customer Service Centre.
Vehicles with the first generation of in-vehicle units (IUs) - first rolled out in 1998 with the introduction of the ERP - can currently only use the CashCard.
Those with the second-generation “dual-mode” IUs introduced in 2009 can use a variety of payment methods such as credit card, EZ-Link cards, and NETS FlashPay cards.
About 14.9 million CashCards and FlashPay cards have been issued to date, said NETS.
Some motorists have noted that gantries at certain car parks - which have not adopted the full Electronic Parking System (EPS) - only recognise the older CashCard. A 10-page thread on local motoring website MyCarForum lists more than 15 car parks where the gantries are unable to detect the newer contactless cards in the IU.
The NETS Motoring card will provide “ultimate convenience being the only card in the market that motorists can use to pay at all car parks across Singapore”, NETS said.
“As with NETS’ CashCard, motorists will just need to insert the NETS Motoring Card into their dual-mode IU for auto-deduction of payments for ERP and car park charges at full Electronic Parking System (EPS) car parks,” said the electronic payment service provider on its website.
“For all non-full EPS car parks, motorists can use the NETS Motoring Card to make payments with a tap-and-hold motion at the exit readers.”
The new card will work with both the second-generation in-vehicle units (IUs) - introduced in 2009 - as well as the upcoming on-board units (OBUs) which will be rolled out from the second half of this year, the spokesperson added.
The first OBUs will be installed free of charge for existing Singapore-registered vehicles from the second half of this year, with the installation exercise expected to take place over a period of 18 months.
These will be used when Singapore switches to the satellite-based next-generation ERP system in mid-2023.
While motorists using the first generation IUs can continue to use the NETS CashCards, they will not be able to do so once the new OBU is installed in their vehicles.
In September last year, the Land Transport Authority said the OBU is designed to be compatible with existing systems, including ERP charges and parking.
It added that motorists can continue to use their CEPAS cards such as NETS FlashPay and EZ-Link cards, or credit or debit cards to make payment.
“In light of expected developments, the NETS Motoring Card will provide motorists a seamless payment solution to meet their motoring requirements in the foreseeable future,” it said.