Credit and debit card top-up for Cepas cards at MRT stations from Jan 1

Cards from any bank can be used at the General Ticketing Machines (GTMs) at MRT stations island-wide.
Cards from any bank can be used at the General Ticketing Machines (GTMs) at MRT stations island-wide.ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

SINGAPORE - Commuters will be able to use their credit and debit cards to top up their Cepas cards from Jan 1.

Cards from any bank can be used at the General Ticketing Machines (GTMs) at MRT stations islandwide.

All foreign-issued credit and debit cards will also be accepted, Transit Link said on Thursday (Dec 29).

No convenience fee will be levied, but prevailing foreign exchange rates will be applied by the card-issuing banks.

For Singapore-issued credit and debit cards, there will be no additional charges.

The maximum daily top-up limit will also be increased from the current $40 to $100 per credit or debit card per day.

Cepas or Contactless E-Purse Application cards include ez-link cards and Nets FlashPay cards as well as concession cards.

A pilot for credit and debit card top-ups has been ongoing since July 1 for Singapore-issued UOB Visa, UOB Mastercard and UOB JCB cards.

Before the launch, cash top-up accounted for 63 per cent of total top-up value at GTMs, while cashless payment via Nets made up about 37 per cent of top-up value.

In the five months following the launch, the number of transactions using credit/debit cards rose steadily from 800 on the first day to an average of 1,800 transactions per day in November.

The total value of cashless transactions using credit or debit cards in the same month was over $1.5 million.

Cashless payment including both Nets and credit/debit cards, has risen from 37 per cent to 40 per cent of total top-up value, representing a 3 per cent shift from cash to cashless mode of payment during the trial with only UOB Cards, Transit Link said.

"We are very encouraged by the results of the pilot launch and have therefore decided to proceed with the extension to all local and foreign-issued credit and debit cards." said Mr Lee Yuen Hee, CEO of Transit Link.

"By expanding the coverage, both local and foreign commuters will find it more convenient to top-up their Cepas cards without having to use cash. This is part and parcel of our drive towards making Singapore a cashless society. We hope to see cashless top-up increase by another 10 per cent by the end of 2017," he added.