Rwanda: the city of Kigali has a new transport payment card

Commuters in Kigali will now have options when paying transport costs after a new player joined the market in what is seen as a major boost to the country’s cashless movement.

Designed and developed by Centrika, a Rwandan fintech and software development company, the smart card dubbed SafariBus has been tested for months in Musanze district.

Commenting on the development, Centrika’s management said it was using “technology solutions and human resources to deliver tomorrow’s solutions today.”

The dual-interface SafariBus card can be used to pay for transportation costs for bus, motorcycle taxi and taxi journeys in Kigali.

“Cashless payments have become commonplace in Kigali’s transport industry with the dual-interface card, called SafariBus,” Centrika management said in a statement.

Yego Moto, Yego Cabs and bus companies like Yahoo Car and RFTC have so far joined the bandwagon, with more expected on board.

Some transport companies have already started using the SafariBus card payment system.

Yego Moto, Yego Cabs and bus companies like Yahoo Car and RFTC have so far joined the bandwagon, with more expected on board. Commuters with the card can tap counters or validators and instantly pay the fare.

The SafariBus card, a prepaid card powered by Centrika Ltd in partnership with Cogebanque and UnionPay International, works locally and internationally. With the card, people can also pay for services other than transport costs.

With the card, the company said, you can also pay for goods and services using point-of-sale (POS) terminals in supermarkets and hotels, restaurants and cafes. The card is also used for online and in-app payments.

You can also use the card to withdraw cash from ATMs owned by Bank of Kigali, KCB, Equity Bank and Ecobank.

You can also use the card to withdraw cash from ATMs owned by Bank of Kigali, KCB, Equity Bank and Ecobank.

Centrika claims that the SafariBus card is an alternative to debit and credit cards.

“We have deployed over 40,000 card users in Rwanda, with a daily growth of 2,000 new users thanks to our attractive features, and this number will continue to increase as people discover the smart card” , said Winnie Mutabazi, Customer Service and Marketing Manager at Centrika.

“Centrika, with the SafariBus card, not only digitizes transport but also supports further acceleration of digital and financial inclusion, said Alex Ntale, CEO of Rwanda ICT Chamber.

“We look forward to the partnerships Centrika will open up for other technology companies that want to integrate this card.”

Through a campaign called “IkoraByose”, Centrika is currently encouraging more people to use the SafariBus card.

Centrika says the SafariBus card will boost Rwanda’s cashless transport systems as well as financial inclusion for people in rural areas, where banking services have not reached. This also comes in support of the government’s goal of achieving a fully cashless economy in the future.

“By using a reloadable prepaid card, people who don’t have access to banking services can store their wealth in a way that doesn’t depend on securely handling amounts of cash,” Mutabazi said.

“Plus, it’s a card that people can use without relying on a bank or similar financial institution.”

Centrika has been in the Rwandan tech industry since 2012. The tech company also has the SafariBus platform which enables bus operators to manage transport and users to transact in the transport and financial ecosystems.

Centrika also owns KeyKiosk and the TiCQet app which issues tickets for events in Rwanda and beyond.

Where can I get the SafariBus Card?

Currently, SafariBus cards can be obtained from bus stations in Nyabugogo, Kimironko, Musanze, Gikondo (Cegem, Merez 2, Maranathan and Bwerankori), Vunga, Cyanika, Kinigi and at the Centrika office in the CHIC building.

Commuters put money on the card. The dual-interface SafariBus card can be used to pay for transportation costs for bus, motorcycle taxi and taxi journeys in Kigali. Crash Bahizi

The company says new show locations will be communicated as they open.

What do I need to get the card?

People who want the card are asked to present their identity card or passport and their telephone number. For minors, to obtain the card, they are required to present the identity card of their parent or guardian.

How do I top up my card?

Centrika agents have been deployed at bus stations and other locations to perform charging services for users. People can also top up using Visa, MasterCard and Centrika’s key kiosk to top up.

Alternatively, they can top it up using their mobile money/Airtel money wallet, without necessarily having the mobile number connected to the card.

LR: Willy Claude Karasira, CEO of Centrika Ltd and Alex Ntale, CEO of Rwanda ICT Chamber. (Crash Bahizi)

The user of Yego Cabs pays his transport costs via the SafariBus card. Through a campaign called “IkoraByose”, Centrika is currently encouraging more people to use the SafariBus card. Crash BAHIZI

About Matthew R. Dailey

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