Cape Town – Are you one of those commuters sick and tired of riding shotgun taxi (this video says it all) and needing to do collections and change calculations, well then you'll welcome the idea that the Gauteng provincial government is paving the way for electronic payments of minibus taxi fares.
The new system is expected to be rolled out in February 2017, over the Johannesburg, Pretoria and Mabopane (JPM) route and will offer improved methods of payment by allowing commuters to use the FairPay card to pay for their public taxi trips.
The JPM Taxi Association has helped spearhead the pilot cashless system on the JPM route, with plans for it to be expanded to other taxi routes, with the aim of completing a national roll-out within five years.
The taxi e-ticketing system is owned and currently being implemented by FairPay, of which TaxiChoice, the commercial arm of the South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) is currently the only shareholder, with Curve Group Holdings as the primary technology partner.
The introduction of the FairPay card goes hand-in-hand with the October Transport Month campaign, “Modernisation of Public Transport in Gauteng”.
'Sixty-eight percent of South Africans make use of taxis'
Deputy Managing Director of TaxiChoice, Thulani Qwabe says, "Sixty-eight percent of South Africans make use of taxis as a means of transport, and therefore we have decided to roll out the FairPay card over this means of transport."
"We will work towards rolling out the FairPay card across all methods of public transport, but we're first looking to have it active for taxis across SA."
MEC for Roads and Transport of Gauteng, Ismail Vadi welcomed the idea of an e-ticket for the taxi industry saying that it is “a step in the right direction that will result in a single electronic for public transport in Gauteng”.
“The standard that must be strived for is ‘One Province–One Ticket’ in line with the national electronic fare collection regulations,” he added.
Jothan Msibi, Chairperson of TaxiChoice says, “The system has now been tested thoroughly, and is fully compliant with all laws and regulations, as well as requirements of all the parties involved. We are ready for the roll out.”
“It is safer and more secure because commuters will no longer have to carry cash, or worry about whether the taxi driver will have enough change for them,” he added.
Msibi says, “In terms of South African regulations, you have to use a fully-compliant EMV bank card. So even though it’s starting off as a taxi fare collection card, it can evolve so that commuters can use it for transactions just like a debit card,”
The card technology is said to enable the provisioning of new services, for example, reduced fares for pensioners and people with disabilities, in the future.
What to read next on Traveller24?
- Saudi visa increase for SA sparks online outcry for it to be scrapped
- Kruger Stories: The crocodile that stood up
- Sunshine Coast: A complete guide to Port Alfred