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Paris will phase out its metro tickets and will introduce a new automated subway system.
The Ile-de-France Mobilites [il-duh-fruhns moh-bi-li-teh] (IDFM), which manages the Paris Metro system in and around Paris, voted last July to automate the subway’s ticketing system by 2021.
Currently, Paris Metro tickets are single-use paper cards with a magnetic strip. Commuters have been using these tickets since 1900, the year when the Paris Metro started its operations.
Paris Metro accommodates about 1.5 billion passengers yearly, making it the world’s 10th most bustling subway system. However, it has not kept up with more advanced subway systems like those of London and Tokyo.
According to an IDFM representative, 5% of metro tickets are no longer working because of defective magnetic strips, causing inconvenience to customers. Also, the paper tickets often become litter and end up being an environmental nuisance.
The new automated system is expected to address the said issues by launching two new metro cards. First is the Navigo Easy pass, a contactless card that costs €2 and can be loaded up. It does not expire and is transferable to another passenger. This card is ideal for tourists staying in Paris for short periods of time.
The second card is Navigo Liberté+ [lih-behr-tey pluhs]. It will be connected to the user’s bank account and will be charged for each use. This card suits people who want to use Paris’ public transportations regularly but refuse to buy the existing Navigo pass that has unlimited monthly rides.
Navigo Easy pass and Navigo Liberté+ will be released in April and October 2019, respectively.