Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Replacement of ez-Link cards

There are over 3 million ez-Link cards that will expire on 1 Oct 2009 and cannot be used. Someone said that the balance in the ez-Link card can be claimed from the Transit Link office, even after expiry. This was not clear to consumers.

Transit-Link said that they have publicised widely to ask commuters to change to the new card. Is this true? I take MRT and bus regularly and was not aware about this "wide publicity". In fact, I was surprised to learn about the expiry date only today. I thought that there would be plenty of time to make a change.

I have been against the idea of a change to the new ezLink card. I felt that it would be costly and add to the fares paid by consumers. The large amount of money spent could not be justified by the additional value to be obtained from the new card. There was no clear explanation on why this change had to be made, and large amount of funds have to be spent.

Tan Kin Lian


  1. Commuters can still get back their unused balance from any Transit Link offices islandwide. If they want a new Ezlink card, they need to pay for it after the free replacement exercise.

  2. Hi 8:10 AM
    Thanks for the clarification. I will amend my blog.

    I received a letter a few months ago, to change my ezLink card (as a senior citizen). I visited the MRT stations a few times to change it. On a few occasions, the Transit Link office was closed. Some stations do not have the Transit Link counter. It was quite a hassle just to change the ezLink card.

  3. Dear Mr Tan

    in addition to the above, I would like to comment further on EZ link's poor communication process with regard to the GIRO card application process. Here was my experience:

    1. I purchased my new EZ link card some time in July and was informed that the GIRO link could only be done some time in late Sept 09.

    2. Come Sept, i approached the ticketing office at Bugis MRT on how i should go about applying for GIRO. Customer service officer informed me that the application had to be done online.

    3. I went on line, and the EZlink website indicated that the GIRO link application had to be done at the ticketing machine.

    4. Patiently i went to the ticketing machine at Little India MRT , and the GRIO link button was an inactive button ...approached the station master who said that it was not possible to apply for GIRO link via the ticketing machine

    5. Wrote an irate feedback email to EZlink - the reponse - i received a form to complete for the GIRO application

    My question is -
    1. Why in the first place was i directed to so many places just to find the right answer?
    2. Why couldnt the ticketing office at Bugis provide the correct answer and provide the form?
    3. Why was the communication process so mis handled and clumsy?


  4. It's a $15 replacement fee after the deadline! What is the logic to set a date and charge a fee? Transit Link should just charge $15 from day one or don't charge at all.

    What "wide publicity"? I only get to know it this morning at the post office and later when I read the ST.

  5. The replacement fee of S$15 comprises the following:

    S$5 for the replacement card
    S$10 in stored value

    To be fair, I think much has been done by Transit Link to publicise the replacement exercise. You can do so even at most Post Offices. Tables were setup at bus interchanges and MRT stations to facilitate the exchange. Newspaper reports were also published concerning the exercise, about the chaos on the first day etc. Queues were formed at these exchange points - you should be able to see it unless you're just bo-chap. I agree that there are hiccups with the GIRO link, and this is one area they should have anticipated.

  6. ya right.. I changed mine at May 09.It takes less than a min and totally no queue.
    They broadcast last month(aug) in the news to replaced before oct...don't u read?
    Do u really want them to come knocking every household to remind everyone..

  7. Some people heard the news about the deadline, but others did not. I happen to fall in the second group.

    This does not give the right to those who knew about the news to criticise others who missed out.

    IF there were wide pubicity, I would have heard about it earlier. I did not even get the news in the MRT stations. Maybe I was not paying attention, but maybe they were not prominently shown.

    It seems that the MRT station will give more prominence to advertisements, and not to public service message.

    For example, they could have inserted a message at the gantry - to tell people holding the old card to change to the new card.


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