Getting around the Klang Valley may be cheaper than the normal rates with the MyRapid card, hinted a Prasarana official.
PETALING JAYA: RapidKL users may enjoy cheaper public transport fares than normal users with the MyRapid card in the near future.
National transport company Prasarana official Masnizam Hisham hinted at this when Prasarana was asked why the MyRapid card was being favoured over the already-existing Touch ‘n Go smart card.
“(It is currently the) same rate for Touch n Go and the MyRapid card, but we intend to make the MyRapid card more convenient for the user.”
“There will be advantages of using the MyRapid card. Perhaps in later parts of the year, we’ll have price differentiation when it comes to parking and also when you want to use (it) for the Ampang, Kelana Jaya and (KL) Monorail lines,” she told reporters at a press conference at the Sunway Resort Hotel and Spa.
According to the Economics Online website, price differentiation (or price discrimination) is simply charging a different price for the same good or service.
A May 2008 European Metropolitan Transport Authorities (EMTA) report divided price discrimination into two areas: journey and passenger.
“Some modes cost less to operate than others; off-peak services are cheaper to provide than peak services; it costs less to cater for short trips than for long ones,” it read.
Passenger-type discrimination, it added, could come in the form of concession fares involving students, senior citizens or the disabled.
One example of journey-type price discrimination may be seen in Singapore’s EZ-link card, currently used on the MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) and buses there.
EZ-link users pay cheaper rates for public transport than those who opt for flat fares.
Currently, Touch ‘n Go as well as MyRapid card users pay the same rates as normal RapidKL users. Their only advantage at the moment is not having to wait in line to buy tickets during rush hour.
Today, Masnizam declined to elaborate on what Prasarana had in mind over price discrimination.
However, she said that the MyRapid card was merely a rebranding of RapidKL’s stored-value ticket, and that it would complement the Touch ‘n Go system.
Having a better control Prasarana chief Zulkifli Mohd Yusoff – who was also present- echoed this sentiment, adding that public transport users here could still use Touch ‘n Go to get around on RapidKL’s routes.
“Touch ‘n Go will still be there. We will still give the public the choice, because some people have Touch ‘n Go for the highways, and they can use it for public transport.”
“We want to be self-sufficient…We want to have a better control of our products and services. Having our own card will give us that advantage, (with us) not relying on another company or another system,” he said.
Currently available for use on the Ampang and Kelana Jaya RapidKL lines, the card would also be extended to the KL Monorail.
Prasarana, Zulkifli added, was also in talks with My Rapid Transit’s (MRT) project owners – MRT Corp- to integrate the MyRapid card system there.
Using the MyRapid card for Keretapi Tanah Melayu’s (KTM) Komuter, he said, was also “in the pipeline”.