Season ticket on a contactless bank card? Now it is possible, thanks to Poland’s first season-ticket-on-bank-card scheme implemented by the Mint of Poland in cooperation with Mastercard
All public transport users in Bydgoszcz, as the first ones in Poland, will be able to use their contactless bank cards as proof of season ticket purchase on buses and trams in the city. Until now, season tickets could only be stored on an individual electronic municipal travelcard issued by the Municipal Roads and Public Transport Authority.
“Online purchase scheme of season tickets for public transport stored on a contactless bank card” is the official name of the new project implemented by the Mint of Poland (the implementing party) in cooperation with the Municipal Roads and Public Transport Authority in Bydgoszcz (the ordering party) and Mastercard (the implementation’s consulting partner).
What is the innovation of the new scheme?
The contactless payment card will serve as proof of season ticket purchase on public transport in Bydgoszcz. The new scheme covers the 14-day, 30-day or monthly, 90-day, as well as the school and university semester tickets. The ticket becomes valid immediately upon completing the purchase transaction via the Bydgoszcz Municipal Card (BKM) passenger portal. It will no longer be necessary to use a vending machine or visit a passenger service point or another ticket sale point to purchase and activate the ticket.
Poland’s first scheme for storing
season tickets for public transport
on contactless bank cards
Before, the contactless payment card could only be used as proof of purchase of a single-fare or time-barred ticket via the Open Payment System (OPS) ticket vending machine. OPS is another innovative solution developed by the Mint of Poland. Season tickets purchased online via the BKM passenger portal could only be stored on an individual electronic municipal travelcard with a MIFARE Plus chip, issued by the Municipal Roads and Public Transport Authority, which also doubled as proof of purchase during ticket inspection.
“There are still many cities and towns around Poland where passengers cannot purchase electronic tickets. Now, with our new innovative solution, they can get the opportunity to buy an electronic season ticket online via a passenger web portal which will be stored on their contactless payment card that will also serve as proof of purchase. For single-fare and time-barred tickets, we offer our tried-and-tested Open Payment System where payment is made via mobile vending machines installed on public buses and trams,” says Jacek Sieński, Sales Department Director of the Electronic Payments Division, Mennica Polska S.A.
How to use the new system?
In 2010, the Mint of Poland launched in Bydgoszcz a state-of-the-art online store (BKM passenger portal) via which passengers could file an application for an individual BKM travelcard, set up an individual account for ticket purchase, and buy a season ticket automatically stored on their BKM travelcard. Back then, it was the world’s first scheme enabling passengers to use public transport with a ticket purchased online and stored in the central system, without the need to physically encode their ticket on their travelcard.
The innovation developed by the Mint of Poland
can now also be implemented by cities and towns
with no electronic ticket system in place – only a contactless
bank card, an online passenger portal and special
readers for ticket inspectors are required.
Under the current scheme, the purchase of season tickets stored on a contactless bank card will look the same as with those stored on the BKM travelcard.
To take advantage of the new facility, the passenger needs only an individual account on the BKM portal linked to their contactless bank card via the secured card identification number. The process of setting up an account and linking it to the card is easy and intuitive and takes only 3 minutes. At the same time, the passenger will get access to the history of all ticket purchase transactions linked to their card.
“Mastercard is committed to helping cities and towns in the technical aspects of the system implementation by providing them with the most user-friendly and secure payment solutions. It is with great satisfaction that, together with the Mint of Poland and the Bydgoszcz municipal authorities, we have the opportunity to provide a quick and convenient passenger service system to all residents of the city. As the implementation’s consulting partner, we attach great importance to leveraging the potential of new technologies to create a more friendly living environment for all. As they can now pay contactless for almost all their purchases, it is only natural for passengers to expect to be able to purchase public transport tickets with their contactless card. In Poland, we see a great potential for such schemes to prosper as already more than 90 per cent of all card transactions are contactless. We are open to cooperation with other Polish municipal authorities who wish to take advantage of new secure technologies to improve their efficiency and passenger satisfaction,” declares Kamila Kaliszyk, Business Development Director, Polish branch of Mastercard Europe.
10 years of the Mint of Poland’s presence in Bydgoszcz
The history of the Mint of Poland’s presence in the city goes back to the year 2010 when the BKM municipal travelcard system was implemented by the company. In 2019, the Mint of Poland equipped all public transport vehicles in the city with innovative validators using the Open Payment System (OPS). In January this year, the so-called accumulated payment facility was introduced. It was the first such complex project to be launched in Poland. Thanks to the new functionality, all payment transactions for public transport tickets made with a contactless card in OPS validators within 24 hours are accumulated so that the passenger’s account can be charged once only instead of being charged each time the card is used. This innovative solution was implemented in the entire public transport fleet in Bydgoszcz, i.e. in about 320 vehicles.
“Our latest implementation is yet another innovative facility we have introduced for the residents of Bydgoszcz wishing to use electronic tickets. From now on, they will be able to buy their season tickets online and store them directly on their bank card without any additional hassle or formalities. It is a convenient and easy method of remote ticket purchase which we hope will encourage new passengers to use public transport,” says Rafał Grzegorzewski, Deputy Director of the Board, Municipal Roads and Public Transport Authority in Bydgoszcz.“ Apart from the innovation of the solution, what matters to us is the security of the transaction and ticket use guaranteed by the Mint of Poland, which is confirmed by strict compliance with the most stringent security regulations of two leading payment card providers – Mastercard and Visa”.