As we have learned about Hong Kong’s travel card system which is considered one of the best in the world, let’s take a look at the travel card systems in Singapore, Japan, and Seoul in Korea. Along with that, we’ll also be able to see how LG CNS is doing in the smart transportation business around the globe.
Singapore: Ez-Link, the second best transportation system after Hong Kong
When you visit Singapore, Asia’s finance and tourism hub, the first thing you need to buy is an Ez-Link travel card.
World Urban Mobility Index report (Index: Arthur D. Little)
Looking at the world mobility index report from Arthur D. Little, an American business consultant company, we can see that Singapore took the 6th place out of 84 major cities in the world and 2nd place within Asia following Hong Kong. What makes Singapore’s travel card system more interesting is that they’ve been using contactless smart cards since April of 2002. The card is called EZ-Link and it’s made by EZ_Link Pte Ltd.
Since then, smart cards have quickly become generalized and now each person owns an average of 2.9 cards. EZ-Link cards can be purchased at 7-Elevens and subway stations, and replaces cash not only for public transportation such as subway trains and buses, but also other places like taxis, shopping malls, and at restaurants.
EZ-Link cards can be used for monorails towards Sentosa Island in which Universal Studio is located as well. If you’re planning to visit Singapore, don’t forget to get one of their EZ-Link cards which will make your trip much easier.
For your information, buses in Singapore don’t provide any announcements on where they are, so it’s better for you to figure out which bus goes where. Also, don’t forget that you can be fined about 500 dollars if you drink or eat on the subway.
EZ-Link mobile service (source: http://www.ezlink.com.sg/)
Singapore EZ-Link cards are available to download, too, through its mobile app and can be installed on smart phones that have NFC technology since June of this year. As you can reload it by connecting it to your bank account and manage up to 10 EZ-Link cards at once with this app, it is definitely up for the easy use, like the name says.
Japan: SUICA Card Makes It More Accessible to the Masses
There is Octopus in Hong Kong and Ez-Link in Singapore, Japan has the SUICA card. SUICA card, which sounds like ‘watermelon’ in Japanese, stands for Super Urban Intelligent Card and it’s a smart travel card/prepaid e-money card. The name of this card was chosen because it sounded very familiar to the Japanese people.
SUICA is a travel card that has been introduced to the section around Tokyo by East Japan Railway Company and doesn’t cover regions other than around Tokyo. Though there are some regions where SUICA can be used instead of other types of IC cards, Japan is one of the countries where its public transportation system has not become very convenient as each region has its own travel card or ticket.
SUICA card, like others, can be purchased at convenience stores and airports and replace money for payments at restaurants, in cars, and vending machines prevailing around the entire country.
LG CNS in Seoul’s Travel Card System
We’ve looked at smart travel card systems in three different Asian countries so far. Public transportation systems around the world have become so much more convenient within the last couple of decades thanks to smart cards. How’s Seoul doing in such a change?
T-money, for a smarter public transportation system
The revolution in Seoul’s public transportation system started with the T-money card developed by Korea Smart Card Corporation (KSCC) which was established by Seoul city in accordance with LG CNS. T-money card has expanded its use to buses in Gyeonggido Province, airport railroad, and airport buses and can now be used at convenience stores, and online/mobile shopping malls. For more detail on smart travel cards, take a look at one of our older postings.
LG CNS’s smart travel solution meets the world
Smart transportation solution is one of the fields that LG CNS is working as the leading company. LG CNS contracted smart travel card systems in Wellington and Oakland in New Zealand (2008), Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia (2010), and Bogota in Columbia (2011), then started running the systems one by one since 2012. LG CNS entered the European travel card business with its e-Ticketing project in Greece in order to broaden its influence in the smart travel card market. I believe their move in the global market will play a crucial role in the advancement of Korea’s transportation system.
We looked at smart travel card systems in different cities and countries in Asia. As travel cards become one of the first things to buy when we get to a new city, each country’s public transportation system is improving rapidly. I look forward to seeing LG CNS’s smart travel solution in more cities around the globe.
Written by Suyeon Kim, University reporter for LG CNS