Dutch Rail to switch to smart card ticketing end 2012

Rail travellers will have to pay for their journeys using the public transport smart card – ov-chipkaart – from the end of 2012, but exceptions will be made for foreign visitors, an NS spokesman told the Volkskrant.

Many ticket offices will be closed but staff will be redeployed to answer passenger questions and no ticket office worker will be sacked, a spokesman told the paper.
And if passengers demand kiosks stay open, so, for example, they can load up their smart cards, Dutch Rail ‘will not shove their requests to one side’, the spokesman said.
Passengers have been able to use the smart card on trains since October 2009. The system has already replaced paper tickets on buses, trams and the metro in Amsterdam and Rotterdam.

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