RTA recently hiked minimum balance stored in Nol Cards. This has left many commuters, especially those who travel in Dubai Metro, high and dry.
The RTA has recently announced that, to avoid journey interruptions, passengers need to ensure their card has at least Dh5.80 left, which is more than double the minimum fare. Transport fares range from Dh1.80 to Dh6.50 for a single trip, depending on the distance taken. The decision came after RTA expired old Nol cards on August 1.
“To start your journey on public transport in Dubai, the minimum balance needed in your Nol card is Dh5.80,” RTA announced on its Facebook page. The same announcement has been posted in Metro stations and buses.
Gulf News quotes some passengers who are not happy over this decision by RTA.
I remember it used to be very convenient to take the Metro. When I only had a little over Dh2 left in my card, I would be able to take the train even if the fare was Dh4.10. RTA would simply deduct the balance the next time I reload my card.
I was only going one stop away which is about Dh1.80. It is quite infuriating to know that even if I have the right amount of money on my card, I won’t be allowed to use the metro.
Abdul Rahman, a Facebook user, said the new scheme will be even more inconvenient for people taking the public bus because there are hardly any recharge machines available. “Someone enters the bus and punches the card, then the machine shows [there is not enough] balance and he has to go out of the bus because there is no facility to recharge the card”.
It should be noted that Dhs 6 are deducted when a new Nol card is purchased. This deduction was supposed to cover any extra costs if a passenger boards with minimum balance but travels more than the available credit. Now besides holding this amount of Dhs 6, RTA is forcing commuters to another Dhs 6 (Dhs 5.8 is actually equals to Dhs 6 when you round it off).