Naga Chokkanathan

Cashless Travel @ Bangalore

Posted on: June 27, 2017

BMTC plans to implement cashless travel from October 2017. Customers can purchase a smart card for Rs 30; then they can load it with money; swipe it in any bus against the fare.

I feel this puts a lot of extra work (and learning) on the bus conductor. In a city like Bangalore, this can be easily avoided with the use of Mobile Apps Self Service:

* Get on a bus, take out your mobile phone, open BMTC ticketing app, select your route (regular routes are automatically shown; starting point picked automatically using GPS) and get an eTicket, Money automatically deducted from the wallet
* Those without a mobile phone/app/internet connectivity can opt for the manual ticketing: swipe their card in the conductor’s machine

I feel this hybrid approach can help in an easy implementation of this important initiative.

Another alternative could be: adding swiping machines to the existing ticketing machines themselves. That will avoid a lot of unlearning/relearning for the conductors.

But, a long term solution would be to issue a chip-based smart card to every traveller:

* Just get on a bus (CHECK IN), with the card in your pocket
* System uses GPS to find out where you are starting your journey; You are issued an eTicket (SMS) with a minimum fare (Rs 5 at this moment) which is deducted from your wallet
* If you don’t have enough money on the wallet, system alerts you immediately to recharge (which you can comfortably do before you get down from the bus)
* Get down from the bus (CHECK OUT), with the card in your pocket; Once again, system uses GPS to find out the total travel distance, deducts the money (on top of Rs 5) automatically, puts a negative credit if there is not enough money: This will be adjusted in your next recharge

This is a no-swipe solution and can be implemented easily. Smart cards will become costlier (not sure by how much: today it is Rs 30 for swipe-based smart cards), but regular travellers will prefer this I believe.

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2 Responses to "Cashless Travel @ Bangalore"

Once conductors go on strike, the cashless ticketing itself will be kept in cold storage. This is our past experience.

Always cashless is the best solution to reduce the corruption, fake note issues and terror funding activities as cahless transaction keep everything transparent.

I feel, not just BMTC; but, it has to be adopted by small traders in small towns and village make digitization dream come true

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The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Organization He works for / belongs to.

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