Chicago Transit Authority eliminates prepaid debit account from transit cards

The Chicago Transit Authority is eliminating the prepaid debit account function on its Ventra transit cards and will instead transition riders to a closed-loop card, according to a press release.

The CTA said it will ditch the prepaid debit account, which is MasterCard-branded, because it determined "that there wasn't significant demand for this feature in part because of the numerous prepaid debit products in the marketplace and electronic payment options like Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay, which have become more accessible and provide consumers with increased financial options, including the ability to pay their Ventra fares."

The prepaid debit functionality will cease to be available as of Dec. 31, 2017.

Customers who have opened prepaid debit accounts as a part of their Ventra accounts are being offered the ability to transfer funds to new prepaid debit cards offered by Money Network, which has administered the prepaid debit feature for Ventra. Customers can spend down their prepaid balances, transfer their funds to a new prepaid debit card or have their funds returned to them via check from Money Network.

Meantime, the CTA's new closed-loop only contactless card will go on sale Dec. 18 at Ventra vending machines, at more than 1,000 retail outlets where Ventra is sold, and to customers who purchase new Ventra cards by phone or online.

Topics: Card Brands, Contactless / NFC, Mobile/Digital Wallet, POS

Companies: Samsung, Google, MasterCard, Apple

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