Metro Manila Toll Payments Get an Upgrade with Unified RFID Sticker and Wallet
The Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) of Metro Manila is endeavoring to revolutionize the toll payment system by introducing a unified Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) sticker and wallet for motorists. The new system, slated for a full launch by June 2024, is part of the third phase of the toll interoperability project. It aims to streamline toll payments on expressways operated by San Miguel Corporation and Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation.
This unified system is underpinned by the one RFID, one wallet policy. The principle is simple: a single RFID sticker will be readable on both expressways, eliminating the need for motorists to maintain separate accounts for different toll systems. Instead, a single load purchase will suffice for toll payments on both systems, thereby simplifying the process for users. The system is currently being tested in a user acceptance test planned for December of this year.
In readiness for the full implementation of this project, the TRB is currently conducting a two-month dry run for contactless transactions in select toll plazas. This exercise is intended to assess the readiness of operators for the program’s full implementation. The lessons learned from this dry run will be instrumental in ensuring a smooth transition when the system goes live.
Benefits for Motorists
The unified RFID system promises several benefits for motorists. Firstly, it will streamline the toll payment process, eliminating the need for motorists to maintain separate accounts for different tollway systems. This will not only simplify the process but also save time for motorists. Secondly, the RFID system will facilitate contactless transactions, a feature that has become increasingly important in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A Step Towards Cashless Transactions
The introduction of the one RFID, one wallet policy represents a significant step towards the full transition into a cashless tolling system. This transition began with a department order issued by the Department of Transportation, requiring all expressways and tollways to shift to a cashless payment system. Originally slated for November 2020, the deadline for this transition was later extended to December 2020. The unified RFID system forms an integral part of this broader transition.
The unified RFID system represents a significant innovation in the toll payment process. By simplifying the process and facilitating contactless transactions, the system promises to enhance convenience for motorists. As the TRB continues to work towards the full implementation of this system, motorists in Metro Manila can look forward to a more streamlined and efficient toll payment experience.
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