PLUS to also start offering RFID tag, with payments using Mastercard

Penang Bridge will be one of the first locations where PLUS will start its RFID pilot program from next month.

Toll expressway concessionaire PLUS Malaysia is partnering with Mastercard to provide easier payment of toll along its highways. The partnership has been established for the pilot launch of PLUS RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification), the new method of electronic toll payment using a tiny chip on the vehicle which sends a radio signal.

The pilot program will start on December 15 2018 at four toll plazas – in Penang (Penang Bridge and Butterworth-Kulim Expressway) and in Kedah (Jitra). PLUS RFID will then be rolled out in phases to all other PLUS highways and made available to all Malaysians.

Registration is currently free and to participate in the pilot program, motorists need to register at www.plusmiles.com.my/rfid.

A sticker with a built-in RFID chip that is unique to each vehicle will be generated after registration. Participants can choose to register their Mastercard debit or credit card, along with their personal details.

PLUS is using an Open Payment system for electronic toll collection. The toll amount will be deducted via a debit or credit card account which the motorist provides during registration. This differs from Touch’NGo’s system for which collects toll payment via Touch’NGo’s e-wallet which is administered by Touch’NGo. The balance in the e-Wallet has to be periodically topped-up in order to ensure that toll payments can be made. Of course, even the PLUS system will require the motorist to ensure that his or her bank or credit credit account has a sufficient balance though the Open Payment system appears to be more convenient.

Like the SmartTag and E-Tag, the RFID method provides easy passage at toll plazas without having to stop to make payment or swipe a card. The partnership with Mastercard offers highway users an easy payment solution for topping up their account from which toll charges are deducted each time the vehicle passes through a toll plaza.

“More than half of the world’s population today live in cities, a number that is set to increase to 70% by 2050. With so many people living and working in and traveling in and out of cities, many countries face challenges in transit such as road congestion. Mastercard is proud to partner with PLUS to enable drivers to speed up their commute time and make their journeys smoother,” said Perry Ong, Country Manager, Malaysia and Brunei, Mastercard.

Mr. Ong added that Mastercard will expand its contactless footprint by launching the first contactless-enabled R&R station at Dengkil Southbound Rest and Service Area (RSA). The RSA will enable local businesses to offer the convenience and speed of contactless payments to their customers.

[Chips Yap]