At the end of 2017, Bombela implemented a pilot programme for using contactless bank cards on the Gautrain and linked services.
The programme aimed to test the viability of using bank cards with the Gautrain stations’ NFC readers instead of dedicated Gautrain cards to pay for trips.
This removes the need to carry a Gautrain card, as users can simply tap their bank card on the service’s card readers.
Gautrain commuters were able to apply to help test the service, and were required to sign up by submitting their personal details, bank card type, and a hashed authorisation token based on their bank card number.
There was no guarantee that applications would be accepted, and commuters who used the Gautrain regularly stood a better chance of being admitted to the pilot project.
Working on rollout
Earlier this week, members of the Gautrain contatcless pilot programme received an email stating that their unique discounts would no longer apply from 1 July 2019.
Pilot project members previously received a discount for one-way trips between Sandton and OR Tambo – priced at R75.
“We want to take this opportunity to thank you for signing up to be a pilot-user on the Gautrain Contactless Bank Card project,” the email read.
“To date, we have gathered valuable input and suggestions from the pilot group and we therefore thank you for your support.”
“We are currently preparing to launch the service to all Gautrain passengers and will be sure to inform you of the details pertaining to the official launch,” it added.
Pilot programme members will continue to be able to use their bank card to pay for trips after 1 July 2019, but the R75 promotion will no longer apply.
MyBroadband spoke to Bombela about the expected launch date for the service, and the company said it had not yet confirmed when contactless card payments would roll out to the general public.
“The launch date is yet to be confirmed. As soon as more information is available, we will notify passengers and the media,” Bombela said.
“In due course, contactless bank card transactions will be available to all customers who are in possession of a contactless bank card.”
“We will have a marketing and communication launch to inform both passengers and the media,” the company said.