Two Chinese cities have promoted the use of the digital currency yuan to pay for public transport. The state-issued digital currency will allow commuters to use the subway in Ningbo or the bus in Guangzhou to pay for their tickets.
Residents and visitors to 2 additional Chinese cities can pay transit fares with digital Yuan
Ningbo Rail Transit is the operator of the subway in Ningbo, an eastern Chinese province of Zhejiang.
It has now launched payments in digital Yuan, which is the central bank digital currency ( CBDC ) issued by People’s Bank of China. The company stated that the coin will be accepted at 125 stations.
Visitors and residents of the city, which numbers 9.5 million, can now use the Ningbo Rail Transit app to pay their subway fares. They will need to link their e-CNY wallet, which can be opened with any one of six Chinese banks that are participating in the promotion of digital incarnations of the national fiat, to the application.
To make a payment, commuters will need to scan a QR code using their smartphones at the turnstiles. A bonus will be offered to those who select the digital yuan option. Their ride will only cost one penny and they will receive a small reward in exchange.
China is expanding its pilot zone for digital yuan with nine subway systems accepting digital currency in different parts of the country. These include subway stations located in Beijing’s capital, where eCNY payments were first implemented last year.
In Guangzhou, authorities have now allowed passengers to purchase tickets using digital yuan. They will be able use their eCNY wallets to purchase tickets on 10 bus lines, some of which offer sightseeing tours.
Officials were quoted in local media pointing out that the bus routes chosen pass through some of Guangzhou’s most popular spots and scenic places. They promised to increase the scope of this pilot project in future.
Tourists and commuters will have to download the digital yuan application and create a wallet using their mobile phones in order to take advantage of this new payment method. They can pay their fare using the on-board electronic terminal when they board a bus.