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The new Opal card update which could save you $58 per week

Changes coming for Opal card users. Images: Getty

Credit cards will now accrue the same travel benefits as adult Opal cards, meaning the two cards are now virtually interchangeable.

Commuters will also be able to tap on to buses using their credit cards from August.

Buses were previously the only form of public transport which exclusively operated on Opal cards - travellers on Sydney trains have been able to tap-on with a credit card since November last year.

The first areas to receive the service will be Wollongong, Blacktown, the Inner West, the Central Coast and Seven Hills.


"Launching this technology on buses marks the final piece in the contactless payments puzzle and we expect all buses on the Opal network to be able to accept credit and debit cards by the end of September," NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance said in a statement.

Cards including Mastercard, Visa and AMEX are accepted.

The technology, supported by the Commonwealth Bank (CBA), Cubic and Mastercard also allows commuters to tap on using their mobile phone.

“What was previously a transit gate is now essentially a payment terminal, demonstrating yet another example of how technology is enabling faster and more convenient experiences for the community and smarter, more connected cities,” CBA’s executive general manager of business customer solutions, Clive Van Horen said.

Discounted fares for credit card users

Previously, commuters only qualified for discounted fares and travel benefits when using an Opal card.

However, credit card users will now also qualify for daily, weekly and Sunday travel caps and also the weekly travel reward, which delivers half-price travel after eight trips.

Credit card users will also receive the Opal transfer discount and off-peak pricing for train travel.

The daily and weekly travel caps mean commuters never pay more than $16.10 per day, $50 per week and $2.80 on Sunday.

That’s a saving of $58 per week for commuters using their credit card as payment for five days per week.

Over the course of a year that represents a $3,016 saving for commuters travelling the maximum distance using their credit card.

Pensioners will still need to use their Gold Opal cards to qualify for the pensioner discounts.

The weekly travel fare was reduced from $63.20 a week to $50 a week in March this year, with NSW Premier Gladys Berijiklian citing a need to reduce the cost to commuters.

That move was estimated to save 55,000 commuters $686 a year.

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