Back in October, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) confirmed that they will conduct pilot testing of a new automated fare-collection system (AFCS) in the first quarter of 2021. Well, it looks like the said pilot testing has begun.
Expanding the public’s fare options
This new system involves the use of Mastercard EMVCo-compliant debit and credit cards for fare payment within transport networks like the EDSA Busway. The pilot test recently began with the conduct of a Proof of Technology demonstration, in which EMVCo-compliant cards were successfully used as modes of payment in one modern jeepney route, one bus route, and one rail line.
The DOTr said in its statement that the use of this technology in the transit system “expands the fare media the public can use,” meaning EMVCo-compliant cards will be one contactless payment option that commuters can choose to use. That sounds like a good idea, given how chaotic the situation was the last time the DOTr required commuters to go cashless.
Not fully contactless
The DOTr also shared videos of how debit or credit cards will actually be used to pay fares. As the clips show, however, the new system isn’t completely contactless, strictly speaking. You be the judge—check out the videos and read the agency’s full statement below:
What do you think of these recent developments, commuters? Would you be willing to use your debit or credit cards to pay public-transport fare, or would you rather use Beep cards or pay in cash instead? Share your two cents in the comments.