Banca Comerciala Romana (BCR Romanian Commercial Bank) and Regia Autonoma de Transport Bucuresti (RATB, Bucharest Autonomous Transportation Administration) have launched the BCR Zambet card, allowing validation in transportation means across Bucharest (subway included). The card is a contactless debit card, that has the transport application included.
“After London, Bucharest is the second city in the world to have a card that can be used both as a banking instrument and a means of payment for public transport facilities. It is a payment instrument that makes the life of Bucharesters easier and which puts Bucharest in line with London, Hong Kong and Singapore, among the most modern and innovative cities of the world,” stated Oana Petrescu, BCR vice-president.
“We began our partnership with BCR in 2007, when it was the only bank to answer to the Direction’s solicitation of finding a partner for the identification of various means of recharging the RATB Activ card. In 2009, we created more means of recharging the ACTIV card, at BCR ATMs, on-line, through the e-commerce platform of the bank and through the POS facilities installed in RATB sales centers,” stated Adrian Crit, RATB general manager.
The card automatically draws money from the client’s account, so it does not need to be recharged.
Moreover, as of this month, RATB has stopped printing paper tickets and has put on sale only cards that ca be used either as an electronic wallet or as monthly bus passes. A plastic card called Activ may be purchased in this purpose, issued for RON 3.6 and may be chargedt with a maximum of RON 50 in journeys. This card may also hold monthly subscriptions, for a full price of RON 50 if one wants to travel on all buses, trams and trolley lines in Bucharest.The non-rechargeable card Multiplu may cover either an entire day of traveling through the city by public transport, or it may allow up to 10 journeys.
A RATB journey currently costs RON 1.3, but RATB plans to increase the price to up to RON 1.8.
UPDATE: After BCR, BRD will introduce a similar contactless card for the payment of public transport. The card, both Mastercard and Maestro, will also be introduced in Constanta and Sibiu, after its implementation by RATB. Starting in June, BRD will extend the contactless payment solution to all subway station in Bucharest, from the ten locations existent since December last year.
The multifunctional cards may be charged with trips to either one or all the transport lines in Bucharest. These facilities are available together with the regular ones offered by a standard card.
The contactless technology is available throughout pharmacies, restaurants, for stadium ticket payment and now in public transportation means. Currently BRD has 1,000 contactless card terminals, in locations as Carrefour, Mic.Ro, KFC, Pizza Hut, IKEA or Inmedio.