Just in time for the summer travel season, Mastercard has announced a series of partnerships in over 80 cities worldwide, which will enable card carriers to tap to pay for public transit.
“With a Mastercard in their wallet, more and more people have a go-to transit pass for the city they’re in,” said Ian Slater, senior vice president, enterprise partnerships at Mastercard. “In today’s connected world, having to figure out a new ticketing system every time people visit a new city is the opposite of a seamless experience. Our technology is helping to make the world a smaller, more accessible place.”
The move comes as part of a broader movement by the payment company to push the private sector to build smarter, more connected cities worldwide. The company estimates that more than half of the world’s population lives in cities — this rate looks to increase to 70 percent by 2050.
With summer coming, one of the largest travel and vacation periods in the year, Mastercard and its partners have enabled travelers to use devices to pay for public transit in popular tourist destinations, including London, New York, Chicago, Milan and St. Petersburg, among a number of others.
Mastercard has found that, since the introduction of contactless payments across London’s transit system in 2014, some 40 percent of daily pay-as-you-go journeys on the city’s underground, buses and commuter rails are paid via contactless.
“While every city has its own characteristics, virtually all of them are dealing with congestion and pollution, hence they are eager to shift passengers from cars to public transport,” said Pablo Tomasi, senior analyst, smart cities and IoT at IHS Markit. “With constraints on their budgets, cities are looking for smart, cost-efficient ticketing and on-demand management solutions that enhance urban life.”
Mastercard will be showcasing its latest contactless and mobile ticketing solutions at the upcoming biannual Global Public Transport Summit (UITP) in Montreal this week.