x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Personal smart cards for travelling around Dubai

The Roads and Transport Authority begins taking applications for the Nol Blue Card, a personalised smart travel card for use on public transport.

DUBAI // The Roads and Transport Authority has begun taking applications for the Nol Blue Card, a personalised smart travel card for use on public transport in Dubai. The card, which will initially cost Dh70 and include Dh20 worth of travel, is designed for commuters who frequently use public transport and need to recharge their balances regularly with bigger amounts. The system ensures the security of their balances in case the cards are lost or damaged.

According to Abdullah al Madani, the chief executive of corporate technical support services at the RTA, fares will be identical to those for the Nol Silver Card, the pre-paid option that can be topped up and allows travel on the Metro's standard class. If a Blue Card is lost, however, the owner can cancel it and transfer the remaining balance to a replacement, an option not available with the Silver Card.

The Nol Blue Card is a personalised smart card with an e-purse and can hold up to Dh500 (US$136) worth of travel. It will be valid on the Metro, the Dubai Bus network and any of the RTA's water buses. Passengers may apply at any of the 10 open Metro stations or online and submit a passport-size photograph and a scan of a valid photo identification such as a driver's licence or a passport. Applicants will receive an SMS and an e-mail message with a follow-up reference number and, upon approval, an SMS with a date for delivery. The process should normally take 10 to 15 days.

The Nol Blue Card is the fourth type introduced for use on public travel in Dubai. @Email:eharnan@thenational.ae