Phased launch for transport smart card

The introduction of a new smart card to pay for travel on buses, trams and trains will now be carried out in phases and paper tickets will not be replaced until enough passengers support the new system, junior transport minister Tineke Huizinga has told MPs.

The OV-chipkaart system should have been introduced nationwide from January 2009 but has been hit by concerns about fraud and privacy.
Now Huizinga says the aim is to have the card in place in the major cities by the end of next year on a voluntary basis. If enough people start using the card, the current strippenkaart system for tram and bus tickets will end, Huizings told MPs.
Regional bus services will make the switch a year later. Dutch Rail will be allowed to chose when it wants to introduce the smart card and stop using paper tickets.
Huizinga drew up her new proposals following a report on the problems with the Dutch system by University of London researchers. London Transport already has a successful smart card system, known as the Oyster, but has no plans to phase out paper tickets.

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