Commuters transferring between train lines at two interchange stations on the upcoming Downtown Line 2 (DTL2) will have to exit and re-enter at the fare gates.
This is the first time commuters will have to do so anywhere along the Singapore rail network.
At Newton MRT station, commuters arriving on the DTL2 will have to tap out of the fare gantries and walk 56m along a public linkway before tapping in again to get on the North-South Line (NSL).
As long as the transfer is made within 15 minutes, commuters will be charged for a single journey.
The underground link between the NSL and DTL2 is a 24-hour public underpass under Scotts Road, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said yesterday.
If it was closed after operating hours, it would greatly inconvenience the public who use the underpass daily to cross Scotts Road, said DTL2's project director for Rochor to Tan Kah Kee stations, Mr Tan Kian Thong.
TAP OUT AND TAP IN AGAIN
Newton MRT station Transfer between Downtown Line 2 (DTL2) and North-South Line
Bukit Panjang LRT Transfer between DTL2 and LRT system
Commuters will also have to exit and re-enter the system when they transfer between the DTL2 and LRT stations at Bukit Panjang.
Having separate paid areas will allow a new underground link under Upper Bukit Timah Road to be used even when train services are not running, LTA said.
From the Bukit Panjang DTL2 station, commuters can either choose to walk to the LRT station via a covered walkway or a newly built link bridge.The distance between these two stations is about 200m.
As part of the fare computation when transfers are made at Bukit Panjang and Newton stations, commuters will have fares deducted for the first leg of the journey when they tap out.
However, when they tap in to make the transfer, this amount will be credited back into their cards.
A total fare will be deducted at the end of the whole journey.
Under the current distance-based fare system, a trip from Cashew station on DTL2 to Orchard station - taking in a transfer at Newton - will cost $1.71. If a commuter takes longer than 15 minutes to transfer between lines to complete his journey, he will be charged $2.46 - the cost of two individual trips.
Commuters said tapping in and and tapping out, and in again when making transfers was a minor hassle. Undergraduate Elizabeth Tay, 23, said: "It's similar to how we transfer between different bus services. Besides, it's a small inconvenience compared with being able to access another MRT line and go to more places."
The 12-station, 16.6km DTL2 will open on Dec 27, connecting commuters in Bukit Panjang and Bukit Timah to the city.