SINGAPORE: The Land Transport Authority (LTA) will expand a trial which lets commuters use contactless payment cards as public transport farecards, it was announced in a news release on Friday (Nov 30).
After the completion of a pilot of the account-based ticketing (ABT) system with Mastercard, LTA will include NETS and Visa in the trial from December.
ABT allows commuters to use their contactless credit or debit card on their bus and MRT journeys without the need to top up the cards.
Their public transport rides will be charged in their credit or debit card bill, similar to contactless transactions made at retail merchants.
Commuters who hold NETS contactless bank cards from DBS/POSB, OCBC or UOB can register their interest on NETS' website from Dec 3.
For Visa, the pilot will be limited to an invited group of employees from Visa and participating banks.
"The expansion will also allow LTA and its partners to improve interoperability with these cards before LTA introduces ABT to all commuters with contactless bank cards in the future," the news release said.
"LTA is working towards a public transport system fully supported by e-payment methods, where credit and debit cards will double up as travel cards, reducing the number of cards that commuters need to carry."
More than 100,000 Mastercard holders have participated in the earlier pilot since March 2017, recording more than 26 million trips or 50,000 trips a day.
A study commissioned by Visa found that one in two Singaporeans prefer to use contactless debit or credit cards for transit.
The top three reasons for this preference are cutting on the need to top up, reducing the number of cards in the wallet and ease of tracking travel expenditure.