The Land Transport Authority (LTA) and Mastercard are jointly launching a pilot of the Account-Based Ticketing (ABT) System for public transport, by allowing the usage of contactless credit cards and contactless debit cards for fare payments starting from 20 March 2017.
They said in a joint statement that Singapore will be the first in Asia, and one of the few cities in the world, to enable this.
The pilot will be applicable for all public bus and train rides. Commuters holding Singapore-issued Mastercard contactless credit or debit cards can register their interest on the TransitLink ABT Portal, if they have not been pre-registered by their banks.
In all, LTA and Mastercard said that they hope to attract at least 100,000 commuters to participate in the pilot.
MasterCard noted that cardholders who are accepted onto the pilot will be able to enjoy a “tap and go” fare payment experience by simply tapping their Mastercard contactless credit or debit card on the bus or MRT fare readers.
It said that cardholders will not have to carry and constantly top up a separate fare card, and instead will be charged for their public transport rides in their credit or debit card bill. Through the TransitLink ABT Portal or Mobile Services app, they will be able to track their journey and fare payment history.
This system follows an earlier initiative to enable Account-Based payment of ERP charges, where motorists are able to pay for their ERP charges using their credit/debit cards or via their bank account without a need for a physical stored-value card.
Mr Ngien Hoon Ping, Chief Executive of LTA, said, “We are pleased to partner Mastercard in this pilot. Singapore is one of the first few cities in the world to test this fare payment system for public transport. LTA is committed to leveraging technology advancements to provide more convenience to commuters. Account-Based Ticketing using contactless credit or debit cards will add another option to how commuters can pay for their public transport rides.”
Ms Deborah Heng, Country Manager of Mastercard Singapore, said, “Apart from use on public transport, Mastercard contactless payments are already available in many popular retail and F&B merchants, as well as a large number of taxis. The introduction of Account-Based Ticketing in Singapore’s public transportation system is the latest in Mastercard’s commitment to deliver smart city solutions to Singapore.”
“In the near future, we expect to broaden contactless access by enabling mobile and wearable devices for cashless use,” she added.