No Cash for Taxi? No Problem for Hongkongers with Smartphones

March 15, 2018 | Singapore

Latest partnership with HKTaxi adds to Mastercard's efforts in enabling seamless travel across Asia Pacific cities

In the bustling city of Hong Kong, Mastercard and local taxi-hailing app HKTaxi have made it easier for busy commuters to pay for their taxi journeys in a cashless, safe and hassle-free way. A new partnership between the two parties was announced today to enable secure in-app digital payments on HKTaxi’s app platform for Mastercard cardholders.

Powered by Mastercard’s global payments processing network and safeguarded by multiple layers of security, the service will benefit both cardholders and taxi drivers. Cardholders in Hong Kong now have the convenience of handling the payment seamlessly on the app while taxi drivers bypass potential safety risks such as theft of cash or receiving counterfeit banknotes.

The new service is part of Mastercard’s bigger mission to drive seamless, hassle-free transport systems across cities around the world with innovative payment solutions that move beyond the daily friction caused by cash payments. Across Asia Pacific where populations are increasingly moving from rural to urban areas, Mastercard has been actively propelling forward initiatives with the public and private sectors to bring forward greater transport efficiencies and build smart cities.

“Approximately 65 percent of all urban transportation is still paid in cash globally which slows down consumers in their daily commutes. In response, Mastercard is working to create cashless solutions that empowers consumers to get on their way in the easiest and most convenient manner,” said Benjamin Gilbey, Senior Vice President, Digital Payments and Labs, Asia Pacific, Mastercard. “As cities move towards transforming into smart cities, the vision is to continue to build innovative solutions that will improve the quality of life for all segments of societies.”

The Mastercard and HKTaxi alliance comes on the heels of a series of transport-related solutions that Mastercard has implemented in Asia Pacific over the years. Earlier this week, Mastercard and the Transport for New South Wales in Australia launched contactless payments across all Sydney Ferries and light rail services following a successful trial. The rollout means cardholders can enjoy a more frictionless experience onboard public transport across Sydney, as they are now able to use their Mastercard contactless credit or debit cards to tap on and off ferry and light rail services.

Similarly in Singapore, Mastercard has worked with both government and private organizations to facilitate cashless digital payments within the transport sector. For instance, ComfortDelGro, Singapore’s largest taxi operator, extended the convenience of paying with Masterpass to street-hail rides in addition to pre-booked rides.

On a larger scale, Mastercard partnered with the Land Transport Authority in Singapore to jointly pilot an Account-Based Ticketing (ABT) system to drive contactless payments in buses and trains. Following the launch of the ABT system, over 100,000 commuters now use their Mastercard contactless credit or debits cards to make over 60,000 daily trips without the hassle of having to top up their cards. Singapore is the first market in Asia, and one of the few cities in the world to enable such a system.

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About Mastercard
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