On May 15, 2019, Visa, the global leader in payments technology, recently announced the launch of its specifications to support the rollout of the National Common Mobility Card (NCMC) as conceived by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs of the Government of India.
NCMC, also known as ‘One Nation, One Card’, is an inter-operable transport card that can be used for payments across all transit segments including metro rails, bus, suburban railways, toll, parking, smart city and retail.
“Globally across cities, we have seen transit as a gateway category that drives adoption of digital payments in the local economy. In India, consumers have continued to prefer cash to digital payments for low value-high frequency transactions such as transit. With the transit sector expected to expand with numerous upcoming metro and smart city projects, NCMC contactless cards will trigger rapid adoption of digital payments across transit use cases,” said TR Ramachandran, Group Country Manager, India and South Asia, Visa.
Besides being cost effective vis-à-vis cash, it will also help improve the efficiency and scale of public transit systems in the country, he opined.
“With our contactless card solutions, we are committed to the Government’s vision of being able to use a single card for transit, which would be a key enabler for our nation to move towards a ‘less-cash’ society,” he added.
In line with the guidelines laid down by the ministry, Visa NCMC cards will allow the contactless feature of tapping to pay, that provides a card balance for offline usage at transit venues. It allows cardholders to store their transit passes on the card, provides multiple ways to top-up the offline balance on the card and can be accepted at participating public transport operators (PTOs) across the country.
Across the world, Visa contactless cards also support the next generation of account-based ticketing (ABT) models that have been adopted by leading metros across the globe. In the ABT model, consumers can turn up and ride with their existing Visa contactless card, allowing for a seamless payment experience.