MasterCard Worldwide and VeriFone Holdings today announced the first U.S. acceptance of MasterCard PayPass(TM) "Tap & Go(TM)" contactless payments in taxicabs, making life easier for busy consumers in one of the country's largest, fastest-paced cities. The contactless acceptance is expected to roll out to all taxis licensed by the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA).
The PayPass roll out is part of a PPA project contracted with VeriFone Transportation Systems, a joint venture of VeriFone and Taxitronic, Inc., to equip city taxis with systems providing sophisticated networked fleet management capabilities and consumer services including wireless credit and debit payment transactions, navigation, scheduling, trip logs, lost & found tracking, and panic button alerts.
VeriFone estimates that MasterCard PayPass cuts approximately 45 seconds off the transaction time in taxis when compared to cash, and 15 seconds when compared to swiping a traditional payment card. Payment card acceptance in cabs is growing throughout the U.S., and this project will ultimately ensure contactless and traditional card acceptance in all Philadelphia taxis.
To use PayPass in participating Philadelphia taxis, passengers simply tap their PayPass-enabled card or device on a contactless reader attached to a VeriFone Omni 7000 payment system located in the back seat of the taxi. The customer-facing payment system is networked to another VeriFone system, the MX870, a multimedia device located in the driver cab that provides routing, navigation and other information.
With no signature required for transactions under $25, PayPass offers taxicab passengers a fast and convenient alternative to cash and eliminates the need for consumers to search for cash or coins, or hand over their card to the driver. When using MasterCard PayPass on the VeriFone Omni 7000 system, passengers also have the option to enter the tip amount, as well as sign electronically for transactions over $25.
"The VeriFone Omni 7000 is the same device used in many retail stores and will be very familiar to consumers," said Bill Atkinson, VeriFone executive vice president. "Philadelphia taxis with MasterCard PayPass contactless payments will provide passengers with a convenient and interactive riding experience unlike any other in the country."
How MasterCard PayPass Works
MasterCard PayPass uses radio frequency technology to securely transmit payment details wirelessly between the PayPass device and the merchant's terminal. In the Philadelphia taxi implementation, the transaction is then transmitted via secured cellular signal for processing through the VeriFone Transportation System Gateway to the MasterCard network for clearing and settlement. PayPass technology can be found in a number of different forms. PayPass cards include magnetic stripe technology, so the cards can also be used in the traditional manner anywhere MasterCard is accepted around the world. PayPass technology can also be used in a number of devices, such as a convenient payment tag that fits on a key chain for easy access, and in mobile phones.