Myki

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myki
Mykilogo.svg
myki's tagline is "myki it's your key"
Roll-out period
2008-20131
Prior System
Metcard (Metropolitan areas)

Paper tickets (Regional rail and bus)

Issuing Authority
Public Transport Victoria
Areas supported
Services supported
Technology

MIFARE DESFire (standard tickets)2
MIFARE Ultralight C (short term tickets)

Official myki website

Myki (/ˈm.k/ MY-kee), marketed as 'myki', is a contactless smartcard ticketing system designed for use on public transport in Victoria, Australia. Myki replaced the Metcard ticketing system in metropolitan Melbourne and several ticketing systems used by buses in some major regional cities. Myki will eventually replace paper tickets on V/Line services across Victoria.

Myki is a durable, re-usable smartcard that stores value which can be used as payment for public transport fares.3

Having already been in use on some regional city bus systems for a number of months, the Melbourne metropolitan roll-out of Myki began on 29 December 2009, with Myki becoming valid for travel on Melbourne metropolitan train services. On 25 July 2010, Myki coverage was extended to cover Melbourne metropolitan bus and tram services, and on 29 December 2012, with the switching-off of Metcard, it became the only form of ticket valid on Melbourne public transport.4 A limited implementation onto 'commuter' rail services to regional centres began in July 2013.5 It is intended that the Skybus Super Shuttle Melbourne Airport service (with its own, premium fares) will also accept Myki once the system is fully operational.

The Myki system is provided by Kamco (Keane Australia Micropayment Consortium), a wholly owned subsidiary of the American company Keane Inc, (owned by NTT Data as of 3 January 2011)6 and as of 12 July 2005, an alliance of Keane Australia, Ascom, ERG, and Giesecke & Devrient Australasia (G&D).7 Built at an estimated cost of A$1.5 billion,8 the price tag has been described by The Age as "the [world's] biggest for a smartcard ticketing system".9

Usage

myki retail signage
A short-term Myki ticket, issued on a bus in Geelong in May 2009. This fare type is no longer available.

Myki fares are based on the time and zone fares used under the previous Metcard system (with zones expanded to cover Regional Victoria), however the exception of the "City Saver" fare type was not made unavailable under the Myki system.

Passengers purchase a rechargeable Myki card which stores an amount of "Myki money". The fare is deducted automatically as a card user validates the card at a Myki reader. This is called "touching on" and "touching off". The system adjusts the fare deducted for caps (upper limit fares) at "two hour" and "daily" marks, and for other caps such as those that apply on weekends, early in the morning, or for Seniors.

Regular passengers can also purchase and store a prepaid periodical ticket on their Myki card, called "Myki pass", which will allow travel for seven days, or anywhere between 28 and 365 days, depending on the user's preference.10 A single Myki card can hold both Myki Money and Myki Pass credit.

"Touching on" requires the user to hold the Myki card on the Myki card reader and wait until it reacts. Myki is not a swipe card, so swiping, waving or rubbing the card over the reader may result in the card not being recognised. After "touching on", the Myki reader displays the current Myki balance together with the message "Touch On Successful". When touching on at station barriers, passengers hear a beep, the gates open, and the screen displays a message identical to that displayed on a standalone Myki reader. At the end of a journey, or when changing transport modes, users need to "touch off".

Services available

A Myki card can be used for travel on:

  • Metropolitan train, tram and bus services within Myki ticketing zones 1 and 2
  • V/Line trains travelling within the V/Line commuter belt (between Melbourne and Seymour, Traralgon, Wendoree, Marshall and Eaglehawk stations)
  • Buses within Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong, Latrobe Valley and Seymour11

Card types

A Myki card can be either "anonymous" or "registered".12 PTV requires people to disclose some personal details when applying for an anonymous Myki, but it claims that no personal information about the user will be kept after 30 days. People with registered Myki cards will have some information about them kept by PTV. There are Myki cards for full-fare, concession, child and Victorian Seniors passengers, with different designs indicating the type of fare for which the passenger is eligible.

A disposable short-term ticket was originally part of the Myki system. It was valid for travel for up to three hours, being the hour during which the ticket was purchased plus the next two (for example, a ticket purchased at 12:05pm would be valid from 12:05pm to 3:00pm) or, if purchased after 6:00pm, valid until 3:00 am the following day.13 Alternatively, a short-term ticket could be purchased which could be used for a whole day. Short-term tickets were only ever available on some regional city bus services, and the state government, acting on the advice of a report conducted by Deloitte, decided in 2011 that they would not be made available in metropolitan Melbourne, and would be abolished on regional bus systems.14

On 25 March 2013 it was announced that short-term tickets would be abolished on regional bus systems in April 2013: in Seymour, Bendigo and Ballarat on 12 April, Geelong on 19 April, and the Latrobe Valley on 26 April.15

Types of Myki Cards
Card Type Cost, Description & Eligibility
Full Fare
Adult (17+ )
The card has a blue print and illustrates the Melbourne Arts Centre spire. The card costs $6 and does not include any fare: further money must be paid into the card in order to travel.
Child For children aged 4–16 years. The card has green ink and features a tropical fish and the letters CH. The card costs $3.
Concession Eligible users include: Victorian students (primary, secondary and tertiary); Australian interstate seniors; Victorian health care card holders; Australian pension concession card holders; and other concession categories, as indicated in the Victorian Fares and Ticketing Manual, except for seniors and children. Proof of entitlement must be carried while traveling (except for students aged 16 years and under). The card has green ink and features a tropical fish and the letter C. The card costs $3.
Seniors Eligible users include Victorian Seniors Card holders. The card has green ink and features a tropical fish and the letter S. The card costs $3, and is free if a Free Weekend Travel Pass application is made. The card also contains a Free Weekend Travel Pass, which entitles Victorian seniors to travel on Saturdays and Sundays if they have, or have applied for, a Free Weekend Travel Pass. Proof of entitlement must be carried while travelling.
Short Term (no longer available) A cardboard card with embedded circuitry, available in two hour or daily, and full fare or concession, fare types. It was only available on some regional city bus services until its abolition in April 2013, never having been made available in Metropolitan Melbourne.

Note: Acting on the advice of a report conducted by Deloitte, the state government decided in 2011 that this form of ticket would not be made available in metropolitan Melbourne.14

Card purchase options

Myki cards can be purchased and topped up:

  • Online, using the Myki website
  • Using Myki card vending machines (CVMs), located at metropolitan and regional commuter belt train stations, selected tram stops, bus interchanges and shopping centres (however only full fare Myki cards can be purchased)
  • By phone
  • At PTV Hub at Southern Cross railway station (full-fare cards only)
  • At Premium stations in Metropolitan Melbourne, as well as staffed V/Line railway stations within the commuter belt
  • At retail outlets across Melbourne and regional Victoria
  • At selected regional city post offices

Except for cards purchased at post offices, the Myki card has no stored value when sold, and must be "charged" or "topped up" in order to pay any fare. There is a minimum top-up amount of $1, and a maximum amount of $250, or 34 coins, per transaction.

A Myki account can be linked to a bank account or credit card to automatically transfer top-up funds into the Myki account when the stored value on the card drops to a level nominated by the user.

Fare structure

Myki fare payment device on board a bus in Geelong

Fares are based on a zonal system. Metropolitan Melbourne is divided into two zones, with a further 11 zones expanding into Regional Victoria. Zones form concentric rings based around Melbourne CBD, with Zone 1 comprising Melbourne's inner suburbs, and Zone 2 covering the remainder of metropolitan Melbourne. Zone overlap areas exist on the borders of the zones. In these areas fares for either zone are acceptable. The fare payable depends on the zone or zones in which the passenger travels, with higher fares for trips that include Zone 1, as well as for trips covering more than one zone.1617

Previously a separate fare and ticketing system existed for V/Line (country) services, which still operates on long distance services. However, since April 2006 holders of V/Line tickets to Melbourne have had access to both Zone 1 and 2 without needing to purchase another ticket. V/Line tickets to Zone 2 stations are valid for Zone 2 only.18 Fares in most towns just outside Melbourne were also aligned to Zone 2 prices.19

A range of fares are available, including two-hour, all-day, weekly, monthly, date-to-date and annual tickets. There are also concession Myki cards for students, Seniors and others.

Fare calculation and default fares

The Myki system calculates the cheapest fare for a traveller depending on the amount of use. For example, if a card is used during more than one 2-hour period in a day, it will be charged as a daily fare, rather than multiple 2-hourly fares. Myki also applies other available caps, or cheaper fares, including Weekend/Public Holiday Daily ($3.30) and Seniors Daily ($3.60) caps. This cheapest fare system applies within a single day.

Longer periods, of 7 days or 28–365 days, can be pre-loaded into the card as a Myki passprior to travel. If an over 325 day Myki pass is purchased, the days above 325 are free of charge.

If a Myki card is not touched off at the completion of a journey the system will charge a default fare. On trains, this is a 2-hour zone 1 + 2 fare and on trams it is a 2-hour zone 1 fare. On buses it is the 2-hour fare from where the Myki was touched on to the destination of the service. To remove the possibility of congestion, passengers using Myki on trams do not need to touch off, unless they are travelling entirely within the zone 1+2 overlap at the extreme end of a few longer tram routes, where they must touch off to get the cheaper 2-hour zone 2 fare. A default fare will apply if the Myki is not touched off at the end of the journey. Default fares until 31 December 2012 were:

Default Fares
Zone Fare Type Full Fare Concession
Train All 2 hr Zone 1+2 fare $5.54 $2.77 2 hr Zone 1+2 fare
Tram All 2 hr Zone 1 fare $3.28 $1.64 2 hr Zone 1 fare
Bus Zone 1 2 hr Zone 1 fare $3.28 $1.64 2 Hour fare between boarding and end of service (i.e. Zone 1 or Zone 1+2)
Bus Zone 2 2 hr Zone 2 fare $2.26 $1.13 2 Hour fare between boarding and end of service (i.e. Zone 2 or Zone 1+2)

Thousands of Victorians found problems with the accuracy of their Myki bills by using the site mykileaks.org.2021 That site has reported that errors were found in over a third of the 2700 statements that were checked on their site.22 In October 2011, 13% of the statements submitted to the site showed overcharges.23

The Public Transport Ombudsman's annual report showed in the past year, complaints over Myki has risen 33 per cent in the past year over such issues as poor customer service, inability to access online statements and overcharging.24

Card Expiry

A Myki card expires four years after the date on which it is first loaded with money.

If the card is registered, the holder can see online the date on which the card expires. PTV will also contact the card holder shortly before the expiry date to remind them of the card's imminent expiry. Holders of anonymous cards must use CVMs or Myki Check machines to find out when their card will expire.

An expired or expiring Myki can be replaced at a staffed metropolitan train station or Myki enabled V/Line station for free, with any balance from the expired/expiring card transferred to the new card instantly. [3] Alternatively, users can mail their expired/expiring Myki to PTV and wait up to 10 working days for a new card to be posted to them. If the expired/expiring card was registered, the replacement card will be automatically registered. Auto topup will not be transferred to the new Myki and if required, needs to be set up again. To optain a replacement for a personalised Myki, users must mail their card to PTV.

Visitor Pack

A "Myki Visitor pack", intended for use by interstate and overseas visitors, is available. Full-fare packs cost $14 and child, concession and Seniors packs cost $7. The pack includes a Myki card pre-loaded with one day's worth of travel in Zone 1 ($8, or $4 for concession passengers), vouchers for discounts at 15 tourist attractions, ranging from Puffing Billy to the Melbourne Aquarium, instructions on how to use Myki, and a protective Myki wallet. Users can reclaim any unused money on their Myki when they no longer need it, but they cannot reclaim the $6 or $3 purchase price.25 The packs will eventually be sold at 300 locations including airports, hotel concierge desks, backpacker and bed & breakfast accommodation facilities, tourist information centres, Station Pier, Southern Cross Station and other selected outlets.2627

Benefits

A Metcard gate at Flinders Street Station that has been modified to accept Myki

The system currently has the following benefits:

  • It will calculate the "best fare" (i.e. the cheapest)28 although this only applies to Myki money users and not to Myki pass holders.
  • Fares for 2-hour and daily use are charged at lower rates than previous 2-hour and daily Metcards, although when multi-use Metcards were still available, such as 10x2-hour Metcards, there was no price benefit. For example, a 2-hour Zone 1 full-fare Metcard costs $4, but the Myki fare is $3.28.29
  • A Myki card can be topped up (recharged) away from the public transport system, eliminating the requirement for passengers to carry sufficient cash, and reducing queues at vending machines and while boarding buses.30
  • Data sharing - the Transport Ticketing Authority intends to share Myki data with external agencies such as the police to assist with criminal investigations.31
  • In theory, the travel data collected could be used to improve the efficiency of the public transport system.
  • The Myki system provides the opportunity for rail services to charge by distance travelled, rather than charging using the current zonal set-up.
  • If placed correctly in a wallet or purse, Myki does not need to be removed in order to touch on or off.
  • The reusable and durable nature of the plastic used to produce myki cards will reduce the amount of paper used on ticketing.
  • Passengers with registered Myki tickets have the ability to view their travel history, detailing their exact touch on and off times, as well as the service used, the zones travelled in and the fare charged.
  • If a registered Myki is lost or stolen it is possible to cancel it and receive a new one, transferring the value from the old card to the new one. Customers with defective or damaged cards can also gain replacements free of charge. Customers wishing to gain a refund of travel funds on the card can also do so. Previously a $9.80 administrative fee was charged for each of these services; the government has since abolished all fees for these actions.32
  • Like Hong Kong's Octopus card system, Myki could eventually be used more widely as electronic money. However in 2007, rollout concerns prompted the then Minister for Public Transport to focus the application of Myki on transport fare payments before embarking on other retail concepts.33

History

myki Bus - Driver's Console
myki Bus - Fare Payment Device

Work on a replacement public ticketing system in Victoria commenced in late 2002.34 In June 2003, the Transport Ticketing Authority (TTA) was established to procure and manage a new system.35

Selection of operator

TTA opened a tender for a 'New Ticketing Solution' was released in July 2004.36 The tenders closed in October 2004. Ten tender offers were received from six bidders, and four bids were short-listed in December 2004.37 By March 2005, two companies had been short-listed for the final stage of the tender process: the Keane Corporation (with Ascom and Downer Engineering) and Manta.T (with ADI Limited, MTR Corporation and Thales).38

On 12 July 2005, the Kamco consortium was selected to develop the system, winning a $494 million contract, due for completion by 2007. The consortium was made up of Keane Inc, Ascom, ERG, and Giesecke & Devrient Australasia.39

The tender process was the subject of a number of probity concerns in December 2007, with the Victorian Auditor-General requesting police to investigate a leak of tender documents. Draft reports from the Auditor-General's investigation referred to backdated documents and inconsistent treatment of bidders,40 but independent reports by Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Avanti Consulting in 2005, as well as the Victorian Auditor-General found that the integrity of the tender process had not been compromised.41 In 2007, serious probity concerns were raised when it was revealed that TTA boss Vivian Miners, who owned shares in the winning bidder, had also become the highest paid bureaucrat, earning A$550,000 a year.42 Further probity issues were raised when it was revealed the new Myki boss Garry Thwaites was married to the probity auditor for the original tender.43 Conflict of interest was denied by public transport minister Lynne Kosky.43

The roll-out begins

A pilot program was due to begin in early 2007,44 but was delayed by approximately a year.45 In the meantime, more than 20,000 pieces of equipment had been installed, with civil engineering works continuing.46

In February 2008 Victorian Public Transport Minister Lynne Kosky announced that the full roll-out of the system would not begin until the end of the year.47 By March the same year, the minister said that the system would not be operational until 2010.48 In April 2008, the Transport Ticketing Authority (TTA) announced that it had stopped paying service payments to the Kamco consortium after April 2007, because the project had not been delivered on schedule.49

The first field trial of Myki was held on the Geelong bus network in late 2007. The trial identified problems with 'front office' computer software.50 In May 2008 Kamco conducted 'Regional Bus Pilot 1' in Geelong, after which it announced that ninety percent of tests had been passed. According to Kamco's report, Regional Bus Pilot 1 showed that: "Essential onbus activities such as scan on and scan off, top up myki, purchase of short-term tickets using cash or myki money, driver log on / off, route and shift selection and GPS connectivity and accuracy performed well. Back office processes and operational procedures such as end-to-end data transaction flows, generation of reports, training, communications, installation and commissioning were generally good. The operator (McHarry's Buslines) was pleased with the NTS training, performance and ease of use of the myki solution."

Further field tests across other transport modes were planned during the second half of 2008, including an additional test on regional buses.51

In August 2008 testing began on the Melbourne suburban train and tram networks. The train tests involved Kamco staff at East Camberwell, Canterbury, Chatham and Mont Albert stations.52 On trams, special services on route 86, not open to normal fare-paying passengers, were used. These tests were all single mode, with multi-modal trips to be tried at a later date.53

On 12 December 2008, Myki went on sale to the general public on four bus routes in Geelong,54 and on 2 March 2009 all bus routes in the Geelong and Bellarine Peninsula area were completely switched to Myki.55

In April 2009 all bus services in Ballarat, Bendigo and Seymour were converted to Myki.565758 In May 2009 all bus services in the Latrobe Valley towns of Moe, Morwell, Traralgon and Warragul were operating with Myki equipment, making it the last regional bus system to be converted.59

Melbourne roll-out

In May 2009, installation of Myki readers began in metropolitan Melbourne trams, and in June 2009, the first Myki vending machines appeared at metropolitan rail stations, with buses to follow. 17,000 pieces of equipment were to be installed as part of the rollout, with up to 23 pieces being installed per tram, and 2,700 pieces to be installed across the train network's 217 stations.60

From 29 December 2009, Myki became valid for travel on all metropolitan train services (but not trams and buses), in a politically driven move to meet a promise by Transport Minister Lynne Kosky and Premier John Brumby to have the system working by the end of 2009.6162

The limited rollout was said to be due to reliability problems with the equipment on Melbourne's trams and buses. It was reported that the use of Myki on trams was being halted by signal drop-outs, related to the heavy steel construction of the trams, which was hindering the wireless communications required; the overhead electrical systems may possibly have had a detrimental effect on performance. The new Transport Minister, Martin Pakula, stated that another major problem still affecting trams was "canyoning", in which trams regularly drop out of remote communication with a central server because of tall city buildings. One source close to the Myki project said the government had considered installing remote devices on tall CBD buildings to improve communications with all devices in the city centre.63

After the initial launch, tickets could only be purchased online, or from six regional cities where Myki was already in use, further limiting the number of travelers able to use the system.64 24 hours after the launch, over 14,000 commuters had registered online for their free Myki.65

Further roll-out halted

In July 2010 then Opposition leader Ted Baillieu had said that the Opposition was "considering its legal options" with regards to Myki and would look at dropping the system if it won the next Victorian state election.66

Having won the state election in November 2010, the new Liberal/National coalition government announced on 28 December 2010 that it would halt any further rollout of Myki (including V/Line usage, card top-ups by bus drivers, and the introduction of sales at retail shops, until an independent audit had been completed on the state of the current system.

A decision was to be made to either scrap Myki and continue with Metcard, modify the Myki system, scale back the roll-out, or continue the roll-out as initially planned. In June 2011, the government confirmed that Myki would continue operation. However it was announced that short-term tickets would not be introduced in metropolitan Melbourne, and would be abolished on regional city bus systems, where they have been in use since Myki's introduction.67 With the Myki system to be retained, users have asked that Myki be improved before it becomes the only ticketing system for Melbourne. A survey conducted by the Transport Department found that people like Myki's ease of use, but some complained about the time taken to touch on and off, and the inadequate provision of information about the Myki system.68 A survey conducted by the RACV found that users like Myki's ease of purchasing, but the time taken to touch on and off was a major disadvantage.69 The most requested improvement was for more flexibility in the system. Specifically, users want to be able to purchase single-use tickets.69

Final Melbourne implementation

During 2012 the government progressively shut down the Metcard system.

  • From the start of 2012, Yearly Metcards became unavailable
  • After 26 March 2012, Monthly and Weekly Metcards were no longer available
  • After 30 June 2012, "value" Metcards, such as 10x2 hour, 10xEarly Bird, 5xDaily, 5xWeekend Daily, 5xSeniors Daily, 10xCity Saver, Sunday Saver and Off-Peak Daily became unavailable

From 1 July 2012, only single-use 2 hour, Daily, City Saver and Seniors Daily Metcards were available. All Metcard ticket vending machines on railway stations were removed or switched off. The only Metcard vending machines still in operation were on trams. The limited remaining range of Metcards could only be purchased from staff at premium stations, from bus drivers, and from PTV Hub.

On 13 September 2012, Public Transport Victoria and the TTA announced that Myki would become the only ticketing system on public transport from Saturday 29 December 2012. On that date all Metcard equipment remaining on the system became inoperative. In the meantime, the sale of Metcards at premium (staffed) Metro railway stations was progressively phased out, and ceased entirely during October. Metcard validators were progressively removed from railway stations, on a station-by-station basis, from mid-November and during December. Also from November, passengers with unused Metcards were able to transfer the value onto a Myki card as Myki money at premium Metro railway stations.70

On 12 November 2012, the TTA announced that the progressive removal of Metcard validators at railway stations had commenced on a station-by-station basis. All railway station validators were removed by mid-December.71

Regional Implementation

Myki was implemented in mid 2013 on regional "commuter" (short-haul) rail services in a staged process; between Melbourne and Seymour on 24 June, on the Traralgon line on 8 July, the Bendigo line on 17 July, the Ballarat line on 24 July and the Geelong-Marshall line on 29 July.5 Passengers on the lines concerned now have the choice of using Myki or continuing to use the current V/Line paper tickets, which will remain available "for some time".72

The exception to that is that paper periodical tickets (weekly, monthly, date-to-date and yearly tickets) were discontinued after 24 September 2013 for those areas served by Myki. Passengers wanting periodical tickets must now use Myki Pass.73

V/Line Myki Pass users may travel to a destination beyond the Myki ticket area by purchasing a paper ticket extending their journey. However Myki Money users cannot use such a "hybrid" ticket. If their journey includes a service not covered by Myki, a paper ticket must be purchased before departure which covers the entirety of the journey.73

Discovery centres

The former Myki discovery centre at Southern Cross during construction, now PTV Hub

A roaming Discovery Centre, a specially designed semi-trailer toured various locations throughout Victoria for public and staff familiarisation.

A second, stationary, Discovery Centre was located at Southern Cross Station. It was opened by Minister for Transport, Lynne Kosky on 8 March 2007. The centre was then open to the general public from 9 March 2007.74

According to Minister Kosky's announcement, the site at Southern Cross Station includes "... a series of interactive, visual, auditory and tactile activities including staff demonstrations, DVD displays and interactive learning experiences. "74

The Southern Cross Station centre has now been reorganised and re-branded as PTV Hub, and is open 9am–5pm, Monday to Friday, and 10am–4pm on weekends. In 2008, the site cost $100,000 a year to rent from the station authority.75

Transport Ticketing Authority CEO replaced

On 10 February 2010, the Minister for Public Transport replaced Gary Thwaites, chief executive of the Transport Ticketing Authority (TTA), with Bernie Carolan, the then head of Metlink.7677

In July 2010 it was announced that the government had been forced to junk almost 500,000 pamphlets on how to use Myki because they were out of date. They contained redundant information on how to use the recently scrapped city saver fare, and a list of card retail outlets that was current in 2009.78

On 25 July 2010, Myki became available for use on Metropolitan and suburban buses and trams.79

On 10 November 2013, Myki became available for use on Wallan and Kilmore town buses.

Criticisms

The Myki ticketing system has been criticised on a number of grounds:

  • Necessity: critics, such as the Public Transport Users Association, questioned why a new ticketing system was needed, when Melbourne already had an adequate one. The Metcard validating equipment already had built-in support for a contactless ticket (the yellow circles on the front of the former Metcard validators, as well as on TVMs).80
  • Its total cost of $1.5 billion.8182
  • The project has taken far longer than originally planned. It began in May 2005 with a scheduled delivery date of March 2007.83 As of the start of 2013, the implementation of Myki had still not been completed, with V/Line regional services yet to become part of the system.82848586
  • No short-term ticket: The unexplained decision not to proceed with the planned introduction of short-term tickets in Melbourne, and to abolish them on regional city bus services, means that Myki will be one of the world's only ticketing systems on which visitors and occasional users cannot buy a short-term ticket.67 It will also mean that short-term ticket machines already purchased become redundant, and tens of millions of stored short-term tickets will be pulped.87
    In November 2012, the PTUA launched an online petition calling on the state government to reverse its decion not to make any form of short-term ticket available under Myki.88
  • There will be no Myki ticket machines on trams, an option which was available under Metcard. The machines that were previously planned to be put on trams would have sold short-term tickets.89
  • Inadequate card reader response times: The time it takes readers to respond to Myki card is very variable and frequently too slow, and the situation has not improved noticeably since the system's introduction on regional buses in 2009. Users often compare Myki unfavourably to other smart-card ticketing systems in this regard.90
  • Privacy: In 2010 the Victorian Liberal Party while in Opposition expressed concern over the data collection and sharing used by Myki, claiming that the Government was breaching its own Information Privacy Act.31

Problems

  • On 29 December 2009, the reputation of Lynne Kosky the Public Transport Minister was put into question when Kosky was unable to recall the phone number for commuters to buy a ticket,91 and a computer error resulted in over 1,600 people receiving new Myki cards with their name incorrectly spelled or printed as 'anonymous'.92
  • Due to Myki's protracted introduction, the government had to continually extend payments for the existing Metcard system alongside Myki.93 This is done to ensure commuters have a chance to switch over to Myki, before Metcard is removed from the transport network.
  • Newsagents refused to sell Myki cards, because lower commissions are being offered by the government in comparison to Metcard.94
  • Controversies over the tendering process. A staff member of the Transport Ticketing Authority (TTA) left a USB flash drive in a room with representatives of one of the bidders. The TTA claims that this was an accident and that there was no secret information on the flash drive.95 Also, the company hired by the TTA early in the process, to give it technical advice, is part of the winning consortium.96 In late December 2007, it was revealed that investigators in the Auditor-General's office had uncovered serious probity concerns in the awarding of the contract to American IT firm Keane's Kamco consortium. However these concerns were not included in the Auditor's report to Parliament, as they were said to be unsupported by the evidence.97
  • Increased dwell times: role play tests, commissioned by the Government in 2007, detail longer stationary times for trams compared to the Metcard system, because of touch on and off delays, when boarding and disembarking.98
  • Potential for a higher fare charge if a user forgets to touch off: the final cost of a trip, after which the user has not touched off (deliberately or accidentally), may be higher than the best fare. For regional town buses the default fare may be as much as a two-zone fare.99 The default fare for Melbourne Metropolitan Train trips is a '2 Hour Zone 1+2' fare,100 unless touching on a tram which results in a '2 Hour Zone 1' fare.
  • Disability Access: Disability groups claimed that several elements of the Myki program would be problematic for users with a disability (particularly those who are in wheelchairs, have cognitive problems or who lack dexterity) due to the placement of several pieces of equipment.101102 On low-floor trams, validators have been installed at various heights to cater for this. The state government has introduced a Free Access Travel Pass for users who are unable to use Myki ticketing equipment.103
  • Faulty cards: A number of Myki cards have had to be recalled.citation needed About 23 tertiary student mykis failed to activate.citation needed
  • A number of Mykis were sent to deceased war veterans, and to war veterans who were eligible for free travel.104
  • Rules covering faulty cards: The Transport Ticketing Authority originally stated that passenger who had a faulty Myki card would need to buy a short-term ticket or buy a replacement Myki card if they wanted to travel. This replicated the rule for faulty Metcards.105 However short-term tickets have not been introduced on the system, users are now able to go to a premium or staffed trainstation to have their faulty mykis replaced on the spot.
  • The online top-up system: Users reported that money paid via the Myki website was taking a long time to appear in users accounts, or was not appearing at all.106107
  • Auto top-up failure problem: Originally, when the auto top-up feature of Myki failed due to a payment problem, the card was blocked and had to be mailed to Myki to be reactivated. This has since been changed. User's auto top status is removed from the card, and the original top up amount is reversed from the myki.
  • Ticket vending machines receipt issuing: Topping up a myki using EFTPOS or credit card displays a screen asking the user if they would like a receipt to be printed. If "no" is selected, a receipt is printed anyway, containing the credit card user's full name, expiry date and 9 of 16 credit card digits.
  • Vandalism: There have been widespread reports of damage to Myki equipment—with up to 60% of machines being targeted by vandals.108 Damage to display screens on fare payment devices and card vending machines has been caused by heavy objects being used to smash them, often rendering the displays unusable. The most common form of vandalism is through marker pens obscuring screen elements and off-screen instructions or by scratching the screens with sharp objects.109110 In mid 2013 it was reported that Myki machines at some railway stations had been broken into, using portable power tools, in order to raid their cash boxes.111 While Myki readers will often still work despite surface vandalism, passengers might not be able to read the information displayed on the reader's screen.

See also

References

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