Abu Dhabi launches automated electric bus service with 25 stations and 27km route

Starting from October 1st it is now mandatory to use the Hafilat card, an automated fare collection system when using buses, in Abu Dhabi. The Department of Transport (DoT) has implemented enforcement of this rule and passengers who try to pay with cash are being asked to get off the bus.

The Hafilat card was introduced by the DoT in May as a way to gradually phase out cash payments. Commuters were encouraged to get or top up their Hafilat cards at automated vending machines located strategically at bus stops, stations and shopping malls across the city. These machines make it easy for people to get both temporary cards and add credit using cash or credit cards. Passengers are required to scan their cards when they board and leave the buses thanks to 140 Swift Reloading machines placed at locations.

The DoT expects that this automated payment system will help reduce congestion and discourage people from evading fares. While many passengers find it convenient some are still getting used to this change. A few commuters have faced issues like running out of credit or facing difficulties, with vending machines. One passenger named Melanie Pinto was surprised when her card ran out of credit within a week and regretted not choosing a card.

It is worth noting that there have been reports of vending machines not working properly as mentioned by Jennet Alves. She had trouble topping up her card at a machine, near Al Wahda mall. Alves suggested that having staff to help commuters in the weeks could be beneficial.

Despite these issues some passengers like Shakeel Hussain find the system very convenient. They appreciate being able to swipe their card for payment of dealing with coins. The Department of Transportation (DoT) has set up a customer care number (800 555555) for passengers to report complaints or seek assistance.

The transition to the Hafilat card system marks a change in how public transportation paymentsre made. The goal is to make processes more efficient streamline operations and reduce reliance, on cash transactions in Abu Dhabi.