Home News As the Myki Contract Is Updated, Commuters Will Be Able to Pay for Public Transportation Using Credit Cards

As the Myki Contract Is Updated, Commuters Will Be Able to Pay for Public Transportation Using Credit Cards

As the Myki Contract Is Updated, Commuters Will Be Able to Pay for Public Transportation Using Credit Cards

Commuters will be able to pay for Victorian bus, tram and train fares with a debit or credit card as part of a new contract for the state’s public transport ticketing system.

The US-based Conduent Business Services has been awarded a $1.7 billion, 15-year contract to take over the service at the end of 2023.

It takes over from NTT Data which has run the myki system since 2007.

Trials will begin in 2024 which will see debit and credit cards progressively added to public transport services, including V/Line regional services.

That process is expected to take two years.

Public Transport Minister Ben Carroll said the new ticketing system would be simpler and more convenient for commuters.

“You’ll actually be able to use your credit card when you get to the gate, or your credit card to touch on and touch off,” Mr Carroll said.

“For the past 16 years, we have had a card-based ticketing system under myki. We will now reach the 21st century with account-based ticketing.”

The new system will continue to be known as myki and physical cards will still be able to be used for the next two years as the changes are introduced.

“Myki does have a strong brand awareness but it will be a completely different company running the system,” Mr Carroll said.

Fares will also be able to be paid for on smartphones and watches and will be compatible with both Android and Apple mobile phones.

The current myki app was introduced in 2019 and only works on Android phones.

Victoria to no longer be ‘the test bed’

Myki has long faced criticism from public transport users who have complained about the lack of options for travelling if a commuter left their card at home, lack of ease to top up balances, and the expiration of cards.

Mr Carroll said he was confident there would not be the same discontent with the new system.

He said the major difference between services is that it is not a world-first.

“Indeed, we are taking a system that has been tested in Paris, in Dubai, in Montreal, in New Jersey and bringing that system here to Melbourne so we’re not the first responder for this new system, we aren’t the test bed.”

Shadow Minister for Public Transport Richard Riordan questioned why it would take two years to trial what he described as an “off-the-shelf” system that was already in use in major global cities.

“It must clearly come from a very high shelf because they’re going to need a long ladder and a lot of time to get to it and bring it down to Victorians,” Mr Riordan said.

He also questioned whether the digital smart phone and smart watch rollout would be reliable in regional areas which can have patchy signals.

The Public Transport Users Association’s Daniel Bowen called for the system to be rolled out across the state, including in remote areas, to ensure a “seamless experience no matter where you travel”.

He said he also hoped to see the implementation of automatic fare capping.

“You should just be able to travel and the system should be able to say, ‘yep, you’ve reached the weekly fare, we’re not going to charge you anymore,'” he said.

“Sydney’s got it so you’d hope they’d deliver on that [in Melbourne].”

New South Wales rail commuters have been able to use debit and credit cards since 2018 with the system expanded to buses the following year.

Tap and pay is available on Adelaide’s trams and O-Bahn bus system and it will be available on all buses by mid-2023, while Queenslanders can use them on the Gold Coast tram network and some train networks around Brisbane.

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