SMART Selangor buses, which ply the entire state, have introduced the Scan to Ride QR Code feature in the Citizen E-Payment (CEPat) mobile application.
All passengers, except for the elderly and children, must scan the code upon entering and exiting the buses.
This is to enable the state to gather data on the routes as part of efforts to improve the bus service.
It is also in line with the National Security Council’s guidelines that encourage cashless transactions in order to help curb the spread of Covid-19, when the bus service introduces a fare for non-Malaysians.
Speaking at the launch of the initiative by Shah Alam City Council (MBSA) and the state government’s Smart Selangor Delivery Unit (SSDU) Selangor local government, public transport and new village development committee chairman Ng Sze Han said non-Malaysians aged between 18 and 59 would soon be charged a flat rate of 90sen fare to ride the bus.
“This fee will take effect from March 15, under all local authorities in the state.
“Smart Selangor buses will remain a free service to Malaysians regardless of age.
“Senior citizens and children do not have to use the Scan to Ride feature, but just need to show their MyKad or a copy of it to the bus driver, ” he told reporters at the Smart Selangor Centre of Excellence in Wisma BSN in Shah Alam.
Also present were Shah Alam mayor Datuk Haris Kasim and SSDU Innovations Sdn Bhd managing director Dr Fahmi Ngah.
Ng said with the launch of Scan to Ride, he hoped to change people’s mindset on public transportation in Selangor through Smart Selangor buses.
“Taking buses not low-class any more, it is a new trend for everyone and it is safe and comfortable.
“We received a lot of feedback from the public that Smart Selangor should be free for Selangor folk.
“We are not discriminating against foreigners; they just have to pay a token fare of 90sen per ride, which is not uncommon for other services too, ” he said.
Launched in 2015, Smart Selangor currently has 142 buses plying 43 routes.
CEPat is a multipurpose free-to-download app. It contains a suite of eight government services.
“There has been about 11,000 downloads so far, ” said Fahmi.
“From our data, we have about 200,000 users of the CEPat app and we hope to reach 200,000 user downloads just for the Smart Selangor bus alone.
“The state hopes the app will be a digital window for citizens to connect directly to the government.
“The CEPat app has other purposes too, like enabling users to pay their assessment tax, ” he said.
He added that the app was launched in 2018 and fully upgraded to include more features in 2019 such as Scan to Ride.
CEPat app users can also top-up tokens in the app using e-wallet and online banking platforms, or reload at offline retail partners such as 7Eleven, 99Speedmart and KKMart.
Ng said the Selangor government and all 12 local councils spend about RM50mil a year to maintain all existing Smart Selangor routes.
“MBSA alone has to spend RM8mil a year to maintain Smart Selangor within the city.
“We think it is fair we give priority to Malaysians, ” he added.