Qld flags expansion of go card system to retailers

Queensland's go card system could see use in places like petrol stations and convenience stores, with the Department of Transport and Main Roads giving advance notice that it will go to market to seek expressions of interest.
Written by Michael Lee, Contributor

The Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads has flagged an expansion of its go card system, used on its public transport networks, to more retailers.

In a statement on Thursday, Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said that the department would go out to tender to seek interest on expanding upon the existing retail contract. This could potentially see the cards used in supermarkets, grocery chains, petrol stations, newsagents, and convenience stores.

It is not the first time that a contactless electronic ticket has been used beyond transport systems. Japan's Suica and Pasmo cards in particular have seen their use extended so that customers can make purchases from vending machines, retail outlets, some restaurants, certain taxis, and various internet purchases made with a laptop with a card reader.

"Availability of go card's facilities is one of the biggest issues people raise with me, and this would deliver more options to purchase, top-up, check their balance, or change expiry dates," Emerson said.

The department said that although go cards are already available at over 580 locations, the approach of installing and operating the current go card top up machines is too costly. By taking advantage of existing electronic payment methods at retailers, it hopes to address this issue.

"This first step would also look to resolve compatibility and security issues with integrating different technology," Emerson said.

The department expects to release an expression of interest in the coming weeks.

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