Expressway firm favors cashless, contactless toll payment

Expressway firm favors cashless, contactless toll payment

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – The Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) on Wednesday said it supports the order of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) for cashless, contactless transactions by motorists entering the expressways to mitigate the transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) and ensure a more efficient flow of traffic.

The MPTC said that with the ongoing campaign for cashless transactions, the MPTC’s ongoing group-wide RFID sticker installation is now on stream.

DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade signed the department order last August 13, 2020 and mandated the attached agencies to formulate procedures “to ensure the smooth implementation of the new policy”.

“Our group-wide RFID (radio frequency identification) roll-out is on track to comply with D.O. 2020-012 and we will be ready to implement contactless toll payments consistent with the timeline,” MPTC president and CEO Rodrigo E. Franco said in a statement.

“Our expressway network that includes the North Luzon Expressway, Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway, Manila-Cavite Expressway (Cavitex), and Cavite-Laguna Expressway (Calax) is primed for cashless and contactless transactions within the year,” he said.

According to Franco, the MPTC tollway group will now accelerate the preparations to fully implement all-RFID transactions in toll plazas.

Roberto V. Bontia, concurrent head of Cavitex and Calax and head of MPTC’s RFID 100 Task Force, outlined MPTC’s preparations into four key elements, namely infrastructure readiness, operational and visibility improvements, motorist assistance, and manpower re-equipping and retooling.

Bontia said the MPTC tollways are technically ready to shift from manual toll collection to full RFID-enabled system.

Moreover, MPTC assures that any RFID sticker installed by its provider Easytrip Corporation, will be compatible throughout the MPTC network of expressways hence, a better customer experience overall.

Preparations are also highlighted by operational and visibility improvements, chiefly with improved RFID signages to help direct motorists during the transition.

Likewise, the RFID stickers are available online and in 24×7 onsite installation sites.

“Getting the free RFID sticker online thru Shopee, and installing it yourself, is the truly contactless and cashless way,” Bontia said.

For onsite options, more installation sites have been made available.

There are also arrangements for specialized groups such as trucking groups, public utility vehicles, homeowners’ associations and local government-based commuters.

Franco underscored MPTC’s policy of “supporting Secretary Tugade’s programs to improve transportation convenience for our country and people, especially the programs that will help control the spread of Covid-19, and keep our motorists, our tollway front-liners, and our employees safe.” Marna Dagumboy Del Rosario / PNA – northboundasia.com