Thursday , July 9 2020

Parking tickets to go paperless as Dubai expands e-ticket meters


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Dubai: Beginning with the first quarter of 2020, Dubai will upgrade the parking meters to issue eParking tickets which will replace the paper tickets that currently need to be displayed on the windscreen or dashboard, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) announced on Monday.

The RTA said it is readying for the launch of the eParking tickets which do not require users to display a paper ticket.

Earlier, the e-tickets were issued only when parking payment was made using SMS for mParking or RTA’s app.

However, the new eParking ticket, that can be produced using payment through a Nol card or coins on the smart meters, is not sent to the user. It will be stored in the RTA’s electronic system, the RTA clarified.

“Advanced parking meters (for this) will be installed over several phases starting from the first quarter of 2020 till the end of 2022,” RTA said in a statement.

This follows a pilot run of upgrading the existing parking meters in several locations into smart parking meters that give out e-tickets.

These smart parking meters are fitted with interactive touch screens enabling users to enter vehicle details and have eParking tickets issued.

Gulf News had first reported about the introduction of the smart parking system as part of the pilot run in Al Jafiliya in June 2018.

New procedure

Unlike the old meters dispensing paper tickets, the new meters require the users to key in the vehicle plate number and the duration of parking, before selecting the payment method which could be either through coins or Nol card.

Once the payment is made, the user has the option of printing a paper receipt for the transaction

Optional paper receipt for parking payment transaction of new RTA smart parking meters
Image Credit: Supplied

The paper receipt is only an acknowledgement of the payment for the user’s reference and need not be placed in the vehicle.

The authority said the implementation of the project started after the analysis of public polls conducted during the pilot run.

“RTA gave due consideration to customers’ feedback about cutting short the steps of entering vehicle details by just a tap of a Nol card,” it pointed out.

That means, in the smart system, a Nol card used for parking payment of a vehicle number gets linked to that vehicle. The next time that Nol card is used, the meter displays the vehicle details for making the next payment.

The new interactive touchscreen on the RTA’s new smart parking meters
Image Credit: Supplied

No more sharing of tickets, disputes

The smart system responds to the growing public trend of using sophisticated technology that saves the hassles of issuing and displaying paper tickets on vehicles, RTA stated.

It also eliminates offences resulting from the improper display of parking tickets, besides enabling the payment of parking fees for motorbikes, the authority revealed.

Virtual tickets eliminate the chances of paper tickets being blown away or displaced, especially on motorbikes.

With vehicle details entered into the meter, the new system ensures a parking ticket is used only for one vehicle and cannot be shared with any other vehicle.

“The initiative is part of RTA’s efforts to develop new services compatible with the Smart City initiative, besides supporting Dubai Paperless Strategy,” RTA said.

The project is part of a smart transformation of the Parking Department to meet the needs of road users in line with RTA’s strategic goals: ‘Smart Dubai and People Happiness’.

Such an innovative initiative would ensure the optimal utilisation of RTA’s assets and upgrade the service level of paying parking fees, the authority added.

How does it work?

  • The touch-screen allows users to pay for parking
  • Users have to first key in the vehicle plate number
  • They also have to key in the duration of parking
  • They can then select the payment method
  • Payment can be made either through coins or Nol card
  • After payment, machine issues a paper receipt and an e-ticket
  • Paper receipt of payment is for reference, not for display
  • e-ticket is saved in the RTA’s system
  • Vehicle details get linked to the Nol card used for payment
  • Same Nol card can be tapped for renewal or a new eParking ticket
  • There will be option to link the Nol card with another vehicle as well

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