A magnetic card might be introduced in the public transport system as an alternative to the traditional bus ticket.
The current public transport system might soon be transformed with the introduction of smart buses, an amended Road Traffic Act, and more recently-announced, the use of a magnetic card to replace the conventional bus ticket.
The National Transport Authority (NTA) has announced the potential measure. The magnetic ticket will be used in all buses regardless of the company to which they belong. Its use might also be extended to certain taxis.
Buses will then have to be equipped with a magnetic card reader. Taxi drivers interested to use this service will also need the reader in their vehicle.
Another innovation that is currently being studied is the introduction of prepaid cards for those travelling by public transport.
An additional measure that is being discussed is including a chip in the bus pass of students to monitor the situation pertaining to those meant to travel for free. This would also allow for a better management at the level of the payment of allocations to bus operators. The system will work as follows: the bus pass of a student will be read every time a student travels. In this way, the government will be able to know the exact number of passengers who are travelling for free, and which buses are actively involved so that those which are not involved will not be included for payments.
The government has also reassured that if the magnetic card reader is indeed introduced it will not affect employment. Bus conductors will not be made redundant. According to l’Express.mu, the employees will be redeployed, and called to carry out other tasks as the whole system itself is reorganised, though the new tasks have not been specified.
Before any decision is made, a number of discussions will have to be held. Watch this space for updates.