Unified travel card integrates several modes of public transport, to ease commuters’ woes

Official from Chennai Metro Rail said that the NCMC would be introduced shortly. “We’re testing it now. We have to get so many certifications including National Payment Corporation of India and the process is going on,” he said.
Unified travel card integrates several modes of public transport, to ease commuters’ woes
Representative Image

CHENNAI: The National Common Mobility Card that allows seamless travel in various transportation modes will boost public transportation which has been declining over the years owing to the increased usage of personal vehicles.

The unified travel card should also cover autorickshaws and taxis to provide last-mile connectivity, demand transportation experts.

Transport Minister SS Sivasankar on Thursday announced the introduction of the NCMC in MTC, TNSTC Coimbatore and Madurai buses even as the Chennai Metro Rail is all set to start trial operation very soon.

Minister Sivasankar said, “NCMC enables commuters to make use of their existing debit or credit card for payments across all segments including metro, bus, suburban railway, toll, parking and retail.”

The stored value on the card supports offline transactions across all travel needs with minimal financial risk for stakeholders. “The NCMC supported by RuPay platform, facilitates multi-modal transit and offline payment also,” he pointed out.

“A common mobility card would improve our convenience for seamlessly travelling between different modes of transportation. Instead of carrying cash or using different modes of cards like Metro card for Chennai Metro, it’s the right step to see that all of these are integrated,” said Ashwathy Dilip, South Asia Director, Institute for Transportation and Development Policy.

She added that as a next step, the card should be integrated with shared bicycle systems available outside the bus stops and metro stations and parking management by the GCC.

Official from Chennai Metro Rail said that the NCMC would be introduced shortly. “We’re testing it now. We have to get so many certifications including National Payment Corporation of India and the process is going on,” he said.

Prof KP Subramanian, visiting faculty, Division of Transportation Engineering, Anna University, said that the introduction of a single payment mode for multi-modal transit would go a long way in solving difficulties faced by commuters every day.

“Once MTC, Metro, MRTS and suburban railway are integrated, it can be expanded to include autorickshaws and taxis too,” he added.

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