Kochi Card1 to facilitate inter-model transit, first in the country
Express-News Service @Kochi With the Kochi Card1, the Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) and Axis Bank's initiative to integrate payments for all modes of public transport on a single card will put the state's business capital in the league of cities offering an integrated mode of transportation like in London, Sydney and Singapore. In addition, its usage for Kochi Metro rides, Kochi Card1 users can now pay for bus commutes in the city, metro parking facilities and Axis Bank are in talks with concerned authorities to expand the payment facility to Ferries, KSRTC services and autos in the city, to be implemented in a phased manner. Axis Bank Executive Vice-President & Head Sanjeev Moghe said 50 buses will immediately start accepting payments through a simple tap-in terminal provided to them from Saturday. "The services will be extended to about 120 buses in a few weeks and we're confident of getting the total fleet of private city buses, about 950-1000 of them on board in 2-3 months," said Moghe. He added with close to 1 million bus ridership in the city per day, the Kochi Card1 will significantly improve the ease of transportation in the city. In lieu of small user & maintenance fee of about Rs 150 a month, advanced ticketing terminals will be supplied to bus operators free of cost, which allows all ticketing services to be done electronically and payments to be received either instantly through a tap using the Kochi Card1 or through cash. "The Kochi Card1, a Rupay-enabled prepaid card comes with an upper load limit of Rs 1 lakh with full-KYC norms and Rs 10,000 with the non-KYC requirement. The card can also be used as a normal debit card at all payment kiosks. The Kochi Card1 users can also avail all Rupay card offers and access to lounge facilities across Indian airports said Moghe. He added Axis Bank is in the process of setting up such tap-in payment kiosks at places which witness heavy footfalls in the city. Currently, customers can purchase and recharge the Kochi1card at KMRL facilities and will be extended to all Axis Bank branches in the city. It will soon be available at various retail and merchant outlets across the city.