Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Old ezLink cards cannot be used from 1 Oct 2009

The old ezLink cards cannot be used from 1 October 2009. This affects over 3 million cards. There was so little publicity about the deadline to convert to the new card that many people were caught unaware. What will happen to the balance in these cards? Read my views here.


Anonymous said...

Hi Mr. Tan
It's not true that there is little publicity. For the past few months, over at my bus interchange, I hardly saw any commuters exchange for the new card at the booths set up there. I believe the luke-warm response happened all over the island. People knew the deadline. But, without any incentive to be among the first to exchange for new cards, people are thinking there is still ample of time. So, why rush? However, if half of the crowd were to think likewise, people will still have to rush anyway -only at the very last few days before their card expires. I suspect this is something to do with our uniquely Singapore culture.

Anonymous said...

You must be sleeping.

There was so much publicity, including letters delivered to card holders.

Please be fair.

Anonymous said...

EZ-Link just want to earn more money. Fare increase not enough for their appetite!!!

Many of us hold 'old' cards with personalised photo, so unwilling to trade in our 'old' card.

Well knowing this, that's why EZ Link came out with this tatic.

Tan Kin Lian said...

10:03 AM

Please be fair. You may be aware about the publicity, but do not assume that other people know about it

I was aware about the new ezLink card but not the expiry date for the old card. Many other people are probably in the same position as well.

I did receive a letter to ask me to change my senior citizen card. If not for this situation, I would not be aware about the need to change the ezLink card.

I do travel on MRT and bus quite often, but there is not much publicity. But I do see a lot of advertisements, which earn revenue for the MRT and bus companies.

I had a lot of trouble in changing my old ezLink card to the new card. The Transit Link office is closed often. Many stations do not have the office to make a change. I had to try many times, before I succeeded.

This is probably the reason why 3 million cards have not been converted.

Anonymous said...

Singaporeans are just like that. When there is money to be taken or free food or sales, there is no need for publicity and you find them queueing up early the very next day after they announced it on TV.

To be fair, there was a fair bit of publicity. Just visit the Post Offices or Bus Terminals/Interchanges. Don't tell me these people never go to such places over the past year?

Fair enough there was some difficulty in exchanging Senior Citizen's concession cards, but for the rest they could even do so at Post Offices, at their convenience with regard to day and time. How much more convenient can that be. Don't tell me we have 3 million senior citizen card holders now? Beats me!

Again, tell me, why is there always that last minute rush to file tax returns? No publicity? They have been doing that for years. It is a filthy habit. Like attending Chinese dinners. People always coming in very late with all kinds of excuses.

Blame it on too much nannying by the Government.

Anonymous said...

To be fair, there are enough publicity made on this matter. Although I only use my EZ link card occasionaly, I got mine exchange at Post Office a few days after the announcement was made and the queue was quite long.

Anonymous said...

To be fair, there are so many cards in Singapore. I have a Senior Citizen SBS/MRT link card with me though only used occasionally. I did not know whether it was affected by the change until I made an enquiry at the bus interchange. Guess what - my card is not affected by the change. There are a lot of other people who may not know.

Anonymous said...

REX comments:

I changed my card at the Post Office near my house several months ago. I don't agree that there was no publicity. I think it was quite well publicised, even the expiry dates thing. It was quite obvious, there has to be an expiry date if a new type of card comes out, so i did not want to be caught and i changed my card fairly early.

When I changed my card,I had expected a queue at the post office but was pleasantly surprised to find no queue. It was very easy. I have no complaints about the new card. I have no idea why it need to be changed, but i guess that the technology is better. For all intents and purpose the new card does not disadvantage anyone by making him pay more for a bus ride or train ride. So i don't know what's this fuss about in this thread post.

Vincent Sear said...

EZ-Link has announced free card replacement period extended for a week.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately there was little or no publicity at bus stops, MRT stations, bus interchange, buses or trains. Probably the space was saved for profit making advertisements.

symmetrix said...

IMHO there was some publicity regarding the new EZ-Link card in the papers, at MRT stations etc. The jury is out on whether the amount of publicity is sufficient or not. Though not a frequent user of MRT, I happened to pass by an MRT station, saw no crowds, and changed my EZ-Link card.

However, I am still bitching about the $0.25 Covenience Fee for auto GIRO topups, something which used to be free before. I won't be surprised if other organisations slowly start charging for GIRO or internet-based transactions under the pretext of offering "convenience". A local low-cost airline has already done that, and that is disgusting. Of course, it may now hide this fee in their base tix price, and no one will be the wiser. Welcome to the new world.

Vincent Sear said...

VS Lingam,

I share your sentiments. I've changed my card but I'm not reapplying for GIRO. Pay them $1.50 to apply and $0.25 for every GIRO fund transfer? It's paying them to make things more convenient for them. I'll let them count my notes and coins. Perhaps it's an exercise to discourage GIRO to save cashiers' jobs.

hongjun said...

Some knew the expiry date but many choose to procrastinate in changing them.

That's many Singaporeans' behaviour.

Anonymous said...

Some ppl do not want to pay the extra fee for GIRO top-ups. This is probably the reason why many waited till the last minute. Even my mother had changed hers (senior citizen card) 3 months ago.

Anonymous said...


Agree with you on this. Why do consumers have to pay more to save cost for the transport companies. Already we are paying more if we use cash for bus rides and day trip tickets. If we use giro, shouldnt we pay lesser?

Let's dont use giro and save jobs for the cashiers.

Anonymous said...

On the topic of the GIRO - not only do you have to pay $0.25 fee per top-up, you also have to 1) GIRO link to only DBS/POSB acct and 2) also allow EZLink to hold onto a refundable deposit equal to to the top-up amount.

I dont understand why DBS has a monopoly on GIRO-link.
Apparently the reason for the deposit of top-up amount is due to the fact that GIRO top-up cannot instantly deduct the amount from your back account - it takes a day or two! Therefore, in order to cover the risk that your bank account has less than the top-up amount, they hold onto a deposit. Imagine the amount of money (at least $20 per GIRO-linked card) that EZLink will have sloshing around!

I'd rather GIRO-link to my credit card. Sure you have to pay the same $0.25 fee, but at least you can earn points/rebates on your credit card.
Ironically this means that credit card users (typically wealthier folks) get a "cheaper" option than those who have no credit cards.

Anonymous said...

I stay in Woodland. It was not a problem to make replacement for my 78yo parent.

Perhaps, other location may have p r o b l e m !

Anonymous said...

The deadline was extended by one week. Yet, the big queues were on the last extended day.

So is it because of little publicity or is it the general nature of Singaporeans Mr Tan?

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