BC Transit Launches Tap Payments Pilot in Victoria
BC Transit announced on Monday a new contactless payments pilot for the Victoria Regional Transit System.
Starting in the “coming weeks”, new hardware installed on buses will be tested by BC Transit employees for several weeks. The system will be using Umo (pronounced “you-mo”) platform that is expected to launch system-wide later this spring.
Contactless payments means tap payments from a mobile wallet such as Apple Pay or Google Pay, and also debit and credit cards. Other payment methods will include the Umo mobile app, reloadable Umo cards. The new payment options means riders no longer need to carry exact change or buy prepaid tickets.
The new payments will be launched in two phases with Umo mobile app and reloadable cards debuting first, then credit and debit cards and mobile wallets afterwards.
BC Transit says a new 30-Day Pass will replace its existing Monthly Pass, along with Cash Balance, both available through the Umo app (iOS and Android) or free reloadable Umo card. These new options can be reloaded at retailers and on the web.
Other changes are also coming to the $5 DayPASS, which will be upgraded to cap fares after a second tap or scan, meaning unlimited daily travel afterwards. BC Transit says cash will still be accepted for single ride and DayPASS fares.
Following the implementation of Umo in Victoria, the payment system will be rolled out to other areas in the following order: Cowichan Valley Regional, Regional District of Nanaimo, Comox Valley Regional, Campbell River, Port Alberni Regional, Powell River, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, Whistler, Pemberton, Central Frazer Valley, Chilliwack, Agassiz-Harrison, Hope Regional, Kamloops, Vernon Regional, Kelowna Regional, South Okanagan, West Kootenay, Cranbrook, Prince George, Quesnel, Fort St. John, Dawson Creek, Kitimat, Terrace Regional, Skeena Regional, Prince Rupert, and Port Edward.
Umo is a transit platform owned by San Diego-based Cubic Transportation Systems.
Regional transit authorities continue to transition to contactless payments. Back in January, TransLink in B.C.’s Lower Mainland launched Interac debit tap payments for every bus and fare gate.