Commuters can now pay for public transport in Singapore by tapping their Visa contactless cards or compatible mobile devices at MRT stations or buses.
The company said in a press release on Thursday that the project is part of the Land Transport Authority’s (LTA) SimplyGo programme.
The project with LTA will be one of Visa’s largest implementation for contactless acceptance for transit globally at 30,000 acceptance points.
All banks that issue contactless enabled Visa cards will be part of this transit initiative. Consumers will also be able to make mobile contactless transactions through compatible devices including Apple Pay, Fitbit Pay, Google PayTM and Samsung Pay. Singtel Dash mobile wallet users can also tap and pay for bus and train rides with their Dash Visa Virtual Account.
Paying for public transportation using Visa contactless is not only convenient, but enhances the travel experience for commuters by eliminating the need to carry multiple cards or the hassle of having to top up stored value travel cards.
More than one-third (35 per cent) of respondents in a recent Visa Singapore transit study say it is inconvenient to top-up their pre-paid stored value cards for local travel. In addition, close to 70 per cent of respondents say it is a hassle to wait in long queues to purchase fares or top up their travel cards.
The same study also highlighted that 75 per cent of Singaporeans are open to using mobile or digital payments as their sole method of payment for public transport.
Kunal Chatterjee, Visa Country Manager for Singapore and Brunei said: “We are excited to bring contactless transit payments to our cardholders in Singapore as part of LTA’s SimplyGo initiative.
“Our partnership with LTA to implement contactless acceptance is one of the largest contactless initiatives for transit that Visa is implementing globally and we are proud that this expansive project has come to fruition.
“By opening up contactless acceptance for transit, we are removing friction from the travel experience, eliminating the need for Singaporeans and tourists to wait in line to top up their stored value travel cards. Visa will continue to work closely with our partners to streamline the payment experience at all touchpoints across Singapore to make it seamless and convenient.”
With the expansion of the SimplyGo programme to Visa cardholders, Singapore joins other major cities that have enabled open-loop payment cards for public transport, including London, Sydney and New York.
The launch built on Visa’s experience helping transit operators around the world find the best, most cost-effective way to address increasing pressures on their existing infrastructure while also investing in the technologies that will serve them in the future. Over the past year alone, Visa helped launch contactless transit solutions in 20 cities across 12 countries, with more than 150 projects currently underway.
“Today, Singapore is already one of the top markets globally in terms of contactless penetration with more than 80 percent of all Visa transactions being contactless. We expect this number to grow even faster with the opening of transit acceptance,” added Kunal.