Your cashless chariot awaits
Transport for London has made contactless technology commonplace for many Londoners and tourists through the implementation of its Oyster card for travelling on TfL services. It’s a great cashless alternative and has seen the demand for the acceptance of NFC-enabled cards on London transport too.
So, it’s not too surprising that TfL wants to totally ditch cash payments from its bus services. As of the 6th July, cashless payments will be the only way someone can pay for a bus in the UK capital. It’s a huge move to make, especially for tourists who may not have an Oyster card or NFC-enabled card. However, it does make perfect sense, after all, many bus drivers wouldn’t want to be responsible for handling all the cash they must process every day. And, TfL’s Oyster scheme has been so successful in its implementation that they must feel that they can wipe out cash payments altogether with little impact on the day-to-day lives of commuters.
There’s also a commercial benefit to paying with an Oyster card as it gives TfL some real data about how often people are moving about, which bus routes are busier at what times and even how often someone tops up or how far they’re willing to travel. It’s valuable data, and encouraging more people to use Oyster cards can only be beneficial. That said, it’s also cheaper for commuters, with contactless payments cards being only slightly more expensive.
Going cashless also means that ticket prices are capped at day or week rates when you use them often enough, meaning that nobody will be paying more than a day or week travelcard rate despite not using cash. So in that regard it’s actually a far more convenient alternative to the hard stuff.
One question worth asking is if this will help popularise more cashless payments in the UK or London. And, if there’s any opportunity to get in on the lucrative London market for cashless payment technologies – after all, they don’t mention mobile NFC payments for tickets yet.[Image: Nicobobinus - Flickr]