The Dutch mobility sector is launching a system to enable passengers on public transport to check in and out using a debit card, credit card, smartphone or smart watch. This system is part of a wider programme called OVpay aimed at innovating payments in Dutch public transport, including through the introduction of multiple payment methods and account-based travelling as well as an overhaul of the current ‘OV-chipkaart’ travelcard system. The Netherlands is the first country in the world to develop such a system in collaboration with all operators across all modes of transport at local, regional and national level as well as the country’s major banks and credit card companies. INNOPAY’s contribution to this programme includes facilitating strategy execution, delivering project management capabilities and supporting the creation of the necessary agreements between all the parties involved in order to enable this service.
As of this week, passengers in the Dutch city of Lelystad can use their debit card or credit card to check in and out when travelling on the local bus service operated by Arriva. They can also check in and out using a smartphone or smart watch enabled for contactless payments. Debit cards and credit cards can be used as an alternative to the travelcard system called ‘OV-chipkaart’ which was launched nationwide in 2011.
An additional payment method increases the convenience for everyone, including for people who only occasionally travel on public transport. Rather than having to buy an OV-chipkaart travel pass, they can simply use their debit card or credit card instead. “The Netherlands should be proud of this cross-sectoral achievement,” comments Shikko Nijland, CEO of INNOPAY. “The nation’s banks and public transport operators have all worked together intensively to make life a little bit easier for all passengers – from daily commuters to international visitors.”
“This is a safer, cheaper and more modern option,” adds Bas van Weele, programme director of public transport payments at the Dutch Cooperation of Public Transport Operators. “The current OV-chipkaart technology is outdated. It’s based on Mifare technology that was developed at the end of the last century, before smartphones even existed.”
As part of the OVpay system, checking in and out with debit cards and credit cards will be gradually rolled out nationwide once it has been tested thoroughly.