FOR years, it has been the transport quirk setting the Capital apart from the rest of the country.
But now, requiring exact change to board a Lothian bus is set to be brought to an end after the transport provider revealed plans to roll out contactless payments across their services from Wednesday, July 24th.
Commuters will be able to go contactless with a daily cap on fares - similar to the system already in operation in London - in a first for Scotland.
Customers will simply board the bus and tap their cards against the reader to pay for their ticket.
However, after three or more taps, the fare will be capped at the Adult day ticket price, so locals are not paying over the odds for travel.
Nigel Serafini, Lothian’s Commercial Director said: “We are delighted to be launching city-wide contactless payment for our customers. With more and more of our transactions becoming ‘cashless’, it was important to recognise the demand for this capability across our fleet.”
“This has been at the top of customers’ wish lists for some time and we’re pleased to be able to deliver an easy and convenient method of payment, which removes the need to carry cash, or know at the start of the day how many journeys you plan to make.
“The capping system means that our customers will always get the cheapest daily fare possible, no matter how their travel plans might change throughout the day.”
Customers will also be able to pay using mobile devices, including those with Apple or Google Pay enabled.
The system has already been in use on the Skylink service to Edinburgh Airport since the start of the year, while it is in longer-term use on Lothian Country routes.
However, bus users will need to use the same contactless card or device across the whole day to benefit from the cap.
The system, designed by technology partner Flowbird Transport Intelligence in partnership with Visa, will only accept single ticket payments under the current system.
But Lothian bosses say they are developing the system to handle group payments, which will be included in the next phase of the rollout.
Steven Orelowitz, Head of Transit, Europe, Visa, said: “People now expect to pay as swiftly and seamlessly for travel as they do for any other purchase, so the introduction of contactless is a huge step forward for Edinburgh and a boost to the customer experience for both residents and visitors to the city.”
Contactless payments will be accepted on Lothian services from Wednesday, July 24.