Asia Express - East Asian ICT
QR-code Mobile Payment for Buses to Be Available Soon in Taiwan
January 07, 2021

Taiwan’s MOTC (Ministry of Transportation and Communications) recently launched a new QR-code mobile payment system for buses that allows passengers to pay fares with their smartphones with any built-in mobile payment app, the Commercial Times reported on January 6. The trial program will run for six month, cover five bus service routes across Taiwan, and support three mobile payment services provided by Easy Wallet, Line Pay, and iCash Pay. The MOTC will spend NT$200 million (US$7.2 million; US$1= NT$27.6) NT$300 million (US$10.9 million) on replacing bus ticketing systems this year and, ultimately, all systems on 16,000 buses by 2025. In Taiwan, there are average 1.2 billion passengers taking buses every year, translating into NT$33.1 billion (US$1.18 billion) in revenue. Owing to the COVID-19 outbreak, mobile payment demand has been growing significantly worldwide, including Taiwan. Compared to the pre-pandemic period, survey data shows that more than 40% of Taiwanese consumption purchases are paid with mobile payment, according to a survey conducted by MIC (Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute), a major government think tank and leading IT research institute in Taiwan. Based on MIC’s findings, 39.9% of Taiwanese consumption purchases paid with mobile payment are at physical channels while 48.2% are for online channels.