Smart card gets good response

The ‘city on wheels’ project through which passengers can pay their tickets by swiping a smart card.

Kochi: The ‘city on wheels’ project through which passengers can pay their tickets by swiping a smart card is becoming popular among private bus commuters in the city.

Most of the private buses plying on city routes are participating in the project, which started on a trial basis three weeks ago and was formally launched on Thursday last. Though many passengers are still unaware about the scheme, youngsters prefer to travel using the smart card.

“Initially, the project has been introduced in less than 100 buses and it is too early to assess the success and feasibility of the initiative,” said M.B Sathyan of the Private Bus Operators Association(PBOA).

Several passengers on the Aluva and Tripunithura routes have shifted to the new system. “Even the elderly are keen to use smart cards and they ask us the details and advantages of the new facility,” said a bus conductor.

The ‘city on wheels’ scheme, launched by district collector P.I Sheikh Pareeth, was the brainchild of a city based start-up information technology firm, Technovia Info Solutions.

Bus operators in the city welcomed the new scheme and are keen to participate as squabbles between bus workers and passengers over balance and tendering exact change are a regular affair.

More than 1000 passengers travel in each bus per day and the number of buses plying on city routes alone is around 542. Initially, the scheme was introduced in the buses affiliated to the Kerala Bus Transport Association (KBTA).

Currently, the facility will be available in Vyttila-Vyttila buses and buses heading to Kakkanad, Aluva, Eroor, Tripunithura and Poothotta.
The project was conceived on the basis of a survey by the agency.

( Source : dc )
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