Our guide to tapping in and out with Hello Kitty
Mark your calendars and start your countdowns. 8 more days until Singapore goes full on kiasu mode.
On Tuesday (21 April), EZ-Link announced the incoming release of what they call “the latest form of contactless technology” and a “breakthrough in form factor”. This is the Hello Kitty EZ-Charm (available in 4 colours), and it will “open up new possibilities for the future”.
Sounds like it might as well be able to teleport you to your destination.
Simply put, the charm functions exactly like an ez-link card. Fun fact: your card can be used for other things besides buses and trains, which means you can make Hello Kitty pay for your taxi, shopping and dining bills.
But first, here’s how to get your hands on one:
1) Prepare $24.90 or get your kiasu on
Each Hello Kitty EZ-Charm (except blue) costs $24.90 (inclusive of GST) while the full set of EZ-Charms costs $99.60. As for the blue EZ-Charms, they’re only redeemable for the first 1000 customers who accumulate 5000 points on the EZ-Link Rewards Scheme with Perx.
2) Link your ez-link card to Perx
Follow these steps to get you the blue EZ-Charm. For more details on the other perks of Perx (heh heh see what we did there?), click here.
- Download the Perx app from Google Play or the Apple App Store
- Link your ez-link card to Perx by keying in the 16-digit CAN ID (on the back of your card)
- Earn 5000 points as you travel (Ez-link card users earn 25 points after each trip they make)
3) Take note of these dates
30th April 2015: Full set of EZ-Charms will be available for sale on the My EZ-Link Online Shop (delivery charges apply)
11th May 2015: Redemption for blue EZ-Charms begins
End May 2015: Red and pink EZ-Charms will be on sale at all 7-Eleven outlets except Changi Airport and petrol kiosks outlets
End June 2015: Black EZ-Charms will be on sale at all 7-Eleven outlets except Changi Airport and petrol kiosks outlets
4) Top up and use
These small delights come with zero stored value, so you must top them up. This can be done at all ez-link card channels, including ATMs.
We thought an ez-link card is as compact as it gets (duh, how bulky can cards be?), but the charm supposedly saves space. Each one does come with a handy strap so that you can hang it anywhere you want. Finally, tap the EZ-charms the way you usually would, and you’re good to go!
5) Other information
These have a validity of only 2 years, an absolute tragedy for die-hard fans (who will probably pay the $25 anyway). Also, they’re only available for adults (another tragedy for young fans) and do not come with any warranty. Feel free to get a replacement if it’s corrupted. All you need to do is call EZ-Link’s customer service hotline. For more information, click here.
One final piece of advice? Mentally prepare yourself for what you hate most: queuing.
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