Financial services company Visa has announced a collaboration with Metrolinx to offer transit riders in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) the choice of making contactless payments with their Visa credit card or a payment-enabled device, such as a smartphone or watch. Contactless payments were previously only available with PRESTO cards.
Visa’s Tap to Pay arrived on GO Transit, Brampton Transit, MiWay, Oakville Transit and on the UP Express yesterday. More transit agencies will be added in the future, PRESTO says. Visa’s Tap to Pay will only pay standard adult fares, and not the discounted youth or senior or student fares available through PRESTO.
Building on the success of the Visa’s collaboration with Translink in Vancouver in 2018, this partnership seeks to improve riders’ urban travel experience by eliminating the need to purchase or load a separate card or handle cash while boarding. Riders simply have to tap their Visa credit card on any PRESTO device while getting on and off the transport. In addition, frequent riders paying adult fares can earn 15 per cent off or more, based on the number of trips they take within a calendar month, if they consistently use the same payment method (credit card or PRESTO).
According to a research commissioned by Visa, over 32 per cent of public transit riders would be enticed to use public transit because of the contactless payment option, with 50 per cent citing convenience as the primary benefit.
“Transit is essential for so many and we believe in the importance of making the riding experience as seamless as possible. Now, Visa cardholders can enjoy the convenience of tap to pay on their commute, just as they already do with their morning cup of coffee,” said VP and head of product and digital of Visa Canada, Brian Weiner.
Visa, through its Global Mobility Team, has supported and delivered digital tools to transit systems around the world, including Bangkok (Thailand), Fukuoka (Japan), Lyon (France), Izmir (Turkey), and Mexico City (Mexico).