More than six million Klang Valley commuters are being inconvenienced with the multiple electronic payment cards used in their daily public transportation.
They are currently saddled with the inconvenience of not being able to use one transport payment card for all their public transport journeys on KTM, LRT, MRT, Monorail and Rapid KL bus services.
Bukit Gasing state assemblyperson Rajiv Rishyakaran said it was ironic that the three payment cards (Touch ’n Go, MyRapid, KomuterLink) owned by the federal government are causing inconvenience and confusion among commuters.
“The federal government since 2010 has been planning through Pemandu to have a single integrated card for trains, buses, LRT, MRT and Monorail.
“However, the government has moved in the opposite direction by allowing the public transportation government-linked companies (GLCs) to create their own payment cards, resulting in confusion and frustration among millions of commuters.
“The Touch ’n Go card, although being the oldest and most widely accepted card, is now being discriminated against by KTM and Prasarana”, Rajiv told the Media Relations and Writing Workshop participants at Campuskini yesterday morning.
“For instance, Touch ’n Go users do not enjoy the same discounts of up to 35 percent as MyRapid card (Smart 30 Monthly) users do.
“All these GLCs need to get their act together and work towards one single card for the convenience of Malaysians across the country.”
The Komuter Link card is redundant as it does not offer any additional benefits to the user, said Rajiv.
'KTM, LRT, MRT should coordinate'
He proposed that KTM, LRT and MRT should coordinate to have a single payment card that will help users save time entering and exiting stations regularly.
The most popular card is the Touch ’n Go, which besides being able to be used on most public transport services, can also be used for electronic toll payment, parking and some retail outlets.
However, when it comes to the KTM Komuter, it seems that KTM is actively discouraging users from using the Touch ’n Go card, limiting users of Touch ’n Go to only a small amount of lanes, oftentimes only one at each KTM Komuter Station. Instead, the Komuter Link card is promoted, with more turnstiles accepting it only.
The creation of the MyRapid and Komuter Link cards was certainly unnecessary, and should be merged or integrated into one single card for seamless travel.
Most cities in the world have only one travel card, said Rajiv.
“Despite the many different transport operators, it’s about time Putrajaya steps up and move towards single card payments for the convenience of six million commuters.”
This article was written by participants at a 'Media Relations and Writing workshop' at Campuskini, conducted by trainer and veteran journalist M Krishnamoorthy.