News of: Friday, February 25 2005,

New national public transport chip-card closer by

With the official opening of the new electronic doors in the metro station Waterlooplein, the introduction of the new national public transport chip-card has come closer by.

In 2006, the chip-card will replace the well-known (notorious) 'strippenkaart', that is now used throughout the Netherlands in trams, buses and metros.

With the new chip card the trains will also be included. The intention is to make use of public transport easier and fight travelling without a valid ticket. This will be accomplished by installing electronic doors and card readers in all public transport.

As of January 2006 the card will work in the metro in Amsterdam, and starting 1 April 2006 the city wants to abolish the strippenkaart in the metro (this depends on successful implementation).
Somewhere in 2007 the card will be the only way to make use of all public transport in Holland. Before that, trials will be held in the city of Rotterdam.

The electronic doors of the metro in Amsterdam (once they start working) will open when a chip card that has money on it is swiped before it. On exit of the metro you have to open the exit doors, at that time the trip fare will be calculated and taken off your chip card.
The doors are successfully used in cities such as Hong Kong and London, but the Netherlands will be the first country to use the card for all public transport, in the entire country.

The chip cards can be reloaded with money. For tourist/travellers there will be cards for sale with fixed amounts.

The official website explaining the new card, is in Dutch only.