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Thread: Singapore MRT

  1. #1
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    Default Singapore MRT

    Recently I met a guy from London... introduced to me from another friend. We were drinking and I was talking to him about Singapore MRT as he is the engineer with SMRT, I found a few interesting facts from him....

    -Singapore MRT is very efficient, but that's because the amount of people (ie human traffic) passing thru the system is lowest as compared to London, Japan, HK etc.

    -Since the crowd is not that heavy, MRT runs slower then the rest of the top subway system, this is to enable better comfort. The acceleration and declaration is slower and that is why it cannot reach a higher speed as compared to the rest. 60kmh is the top speed in most cases, as it also depending on the distance btw 2 station.

    -The escalator speed in average of MRT station is the slowest in the world (as in comparing with other escalators in other subways). The slowest is in Orchard, going to Tang. (I really agree on this... its super slow).

    -Reason for setting the escalator so slow is because SMRT found that many people stood still after stepping out from the escalator, thus blocking the rest that is coming from behine.

    Then got some other stuff I think better not tell... but anyway quite a interesting discovery.

  2. #2
    lighter
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    Interesting, but more curious to know what are the other things that cannot be say..

  3. #3
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    Originally posted by lighter
    Interesting, but more curious to know what are the other things that cannot be say..
    nothing that have anything to do with safety...

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    Default Re: Singapore MRT

    Originally posted by TsQ

    -Reason for setting the escalator so slow is because SMRT found that many people stood still after stepping out from the escalator, thus blocking the rest that is coming from behine.
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  5. #5

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    i prefer HK MTR . It is very tourist friendly.

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    Questions I have regarding the MRT:

    Do you know why the ticket machine was not desinged to accept notes directly but only coins? I know Japan and HK have ticket machines that can take notes so passengers do not have to go to a different machine (or the service counter) just to get coins changed.

    Two years ago, I noticed that some ticket machines were "upgraded" with LCD touch screens in place of the mechanical buttons. Are touch screens more comfortable to use? Are touch screens more reliable than mechanical buttons? Are there any added functionality by implementing touch screens? Basically, my question is: what's the compelling reason for going from mechanical buttons to touch screen that is worth the development cost and cost of the units (assuming LCD touch screens will be more expensive than buttons)?

    Do you know why the ticket machine does not let the passenger enter their destination and then calculate the required fare? Instead, the passenger has to crank his/her neck to check the required fare from the fare chart before buying the ticket. I know the ticket machine in HK and Japan takes destination instead of fare inputs.

    Do you know why the ticket can only be inserted in one possible direction? There are 4 possible ways to insert a ticket narrow side in (up/down, foward/backward). I know in Japan you can insert the ticket in any direction you want, and the machine will read it correctly.

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  7. #7
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    Originally posted by ninelives
    i prefer HK MTR . It is very tourist friendly.
    More exit for sure. Sometime you can be confused.....

  8. #8

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    Originally posted by ninelives
    i prefer HK MTR . It is very tourist friendly.
    Problem is they don't seem to have public toilets lei...

  9. #9
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    Originally posted by roygoh
    Questions I have regarding the MRT:

    Do you know why the ticket machine was not desinged to accept notes directly but only coins? I know Japan and HK have ticket machines that can take notes so passengers do not have to go to a different machine (or the service counter) just to get coins changed.

    Two years ago, I noticed that some ticket machines were "upgraded" with LCD touch screens in place of the mechanical buttons. Are touch screens more comfortable to use? Are touch screens more reliable than mechanical buttons? Are there any added functionality by implementing touch screens? Basically, my question is: what's the compelling reason for going from mechanical buttons to touch screen that is worth the development cost and cost of the units (assuming LCD touch screens will be more expensive than buttons)?

    Do you know why the ticket machine does not let the passenger enter their destination and then calculate the required fare? Instead, the passenger has to crank his/her neck to check the required fare from the fare chart before buying the ticket. I know the ticket machine in HK and Japan takes destination instead of fare inputs.

    Do you know why the ticket can only be inserted in one possible direction? There are 4 possible ways to insert a ticket narrow side in (up/down, foward/backward). I know in Japan you can insert the ticket in any direction you want, and the machine will read it correctly.

    - Roy
    Heh, shows you haven't visited an MRT station for some time, Roy.

    With the change to the EZ-Link system, all the above have been addressed.

    Ticket machines and card updaters now accept notes & coins as well as EFT.

    To obtain a single-ride ticket, a user only has to key in their destination on the touch-screen (shows all stations) and the correct fare will be requested. The touch screen is not LCD based, its more like a pressure sensitive glass panel with the station map (printed) behind it.

    And no more insertions of tickets, the EZ-Link system is proximity based and you only have to tap-tap it at the top of the entry/exit gates.


  10. #10
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    Originally posted by Darren
    Heh, shows you haven't visited an MRT station for some time, Roy.

    With the change to the EZ-Link system, all the above have been addressed.

    Ticket machines and card updaters now accept notes & coins as well as EFT.

    To obtain a single-ride ticket, a user only has to key in their destination on the touch-screen (shows all stations) and the correct fare will be requested. The touch screen is not LCD based, its more like a pressure sensitive glass panel with the station map (printed) behind it.

    And no more insertions of tickets, the EZ-Link system is proximity based and you only have to tap-tap it at the top of the entry/exit gates.

    Ha, you are right! It has been at least 2 years since I last travelled on the MRT. The questions I have listed has bugged me ever since I had the chance to travel to Japan and HK and realized how much more user friendly their system are compared to ours.

    Good to hear that the issues I raised has all been addressed. Better late than never. Kudos to SMRT!

    For me, there is still the question of why the initial clumsy system was designed even when there were already much better systems available in other countries for our reference.

    Thanks for letting me know, though, Darren.
    As complexity rises, precise statements lose meaning and meaningful statements lose precision.

  11. #11

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    Still like M-Ti-R-Lou best ...

    Btw, how tourist buy our EZ Link card for single rides? I remember last time have those green color farecards. What about now?

  12. #12
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    Originally posted by aosis
    Btw, how tourist buy our EZ Link card for single rides? I remember last time have those green color farecards. What about now?
    The single-ride tickets are also EZ-Link - green farecards are not used any longer.

    Have to pay additional $1 as deposit for the single-use EZ-Link card, and after the trip is over (at destination station or up to 1 month after), you can get refund by returning the ticket to the ticketing machine.

    To me this is the single most stupid move by SMRT (heh! and Roy thot that there was huge improvement) - I have tried the single ride thingie (cos left my regular card at home) and the procedure just sucks big time:-

    1. Entry: Queue up 15 mins to get ticket, press 5 buttons, insert $10 note, get back change in coins.
    2. Exit: Queue up 25 mins to get refund, press another 4 buttons, get a $1 coin.

    No mistake!! The queue at some MRT stations for the single ride tickets can be quite time-consuming (note: not long as in many ppl, but in terms of time spent in queue). Plus the fact that tourists are not normally accustomed to the system makes it doubly difficult.

    There was once (on Saturday) when I wanted to top up my EZ-Link card, and there was a lot of confusion on how to get single-ride tickets .. so gallant me stepped up to help (pretty girls from PRC leh, ah but then.....), in the end, I ended up helping 3 PRC girls, 2 Bangladeshis and 5 Indians purchase their tickets ....

  13. #13

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    Originally posted by Darren

    There was once (on Saturday) when I wanted to top up my EZ-Link card, and there was a lot of confusion on how to get single-ride tickets .. so gallant me stepped up to help (pretty girls from PRC leh, ah but then.....), in the end, I ended up helping 3 PRC girls, 2 Bangladeshis and 5 Indians purchase their tickets ....

  14. #14

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    at the start shure got some problem and not so user friendly one. at least SMRT is doing something about it....

    do you know in the past, MTR in HK has different ticketing machines for different ticket type. at least the singapore one has one machine with button for all tickets...

    one thing I think SMRT should also include in the ticketing machine is to be able to purchase more than 1 ticket in 1 transaction. I know HK MTR has it, does SMRT has it too?

    Originally posted by roygoh


    Ha, you are right! It has been at least 2 years since I last travelled on the MRT. The questions I have listed has bugged me ever since I had the chance to travel to Japan and HK and realized how much more user friendly their system are compared to ours.

    Good to hear that the issues I raised has all been addressed. Better late than never. Kudos to SMRT!

    For me, there is still the question of why the initial clumsy system was designed even when there were already much better systems available in other countries for our reference.

    Thanks for letting me know, though, Darren.

  15. #15

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    Originally posted by hanoman


    More exit for sure. Sometime you can be confused.....
    not at all, at least they got sign "A" ,"B" and "C" for etc. There is a map in every station, it will tell you where to exit if you going to a certain place. raffles place also got many exit. but it won't tell you which exit to use if you going to republic plaze, you have to walk and find. in HK, the station map will tell you republic plaza is at exit "E".

  16. #16
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    HK MTR station is so huge, it enable you to go to many places avoiding the traffic above ground. Just imaging, Summerset MRT with exit to Cathy cineplex, to inside of singtel building, to Heeren directly, or even to Mandarin hotel etc.

    but i do understand it cost a lot to build huge underground station... but its nice to go around underground, with aircon, avoiding the traffic and sun.

    HK been using ezlink type cards long ago.. they are using it in taxi and many convinient shops now.. also in drink vending machines. They kept the old 'transitlink' type card but that's for visitor who buy 'per trip' tickets only.. so they dont need to queue again for refunds.

  17. #17
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    I think most of SG pples tots abt SMRT is that is pretty much crappy......(same goes for me too...)

    But when i actually saw a friend from japan who came over during the last holidays....

    She was totally stunned at how advanced singapore transport is.

    IIRC, japan has not implemented any link of fare paying system with it buses n trains.....

    Maybe she had just seen the nicer part of the ez-link system...but to a certain extend....i think the ez link systems is pretty much efficient nowadays....(at least for me)

    Less hiccups and they are implementing improvements to the system. I just realised that now i m able to tap exit at the front door without having to inform the bus driver to change....

    For me its very good thing thats taken care of....cos most of the times...i get stuck n have to exit at the front....

  18. #18
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    Originally posted by TsQ

    HK been using ezlink type cards long ago.. they are using it in taxi and many convinient shops now.. also in drink vending machines. They kept the old 'transitlink' type card but that's for visitor who buy 'per trip' tickets only.. so they dont need to queue again for refunds.
    yes..that's should be the way SMRT do for single trip ticket...

    HK's ezlink card system although was implemented many years ago, but it is far better than in S'pore....the "reader" is much more sensitive and accurate than s'pore, u won;t see pple stuck at the gate/door becos the the reader cannot read the card properly...

    also, in HK there is a special watch that have the chip build in, so that instead of scanning the card, u just have to scan the watch....much easier, faster and chances of losing the watch is lower
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Singapore MRT

    Originally posted by TsQ

    -Reason for setting the escalator so slow is because SMRT found that many people stood still after stepping out from the escalator, thus blocking the rest that is coming from behine.
    Not too many people doing that, but I hate it when it happens. Those morons just stood there like they were the only ones in the world, leaving the others no where to get off the escalator...

  20. #20

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    Well, EzLink is not new at all... in Seoul, the Contactless fare card comes in a form of credit card... and it is (local credit card) one as well.

    And it's usable on both the metro and bus.

    One thing there (and Japan as I remember), one can pay notes in bus, and they will give you the refund in coins... pretty easy as single fare for the whole bus ride.

    Speaking of which I think they should take the median of all bus fare and implement single fare system... easy and no crazy tag before you leave crap.

    Seoul's contactless fare card can be charged even at your friendly street vendor... ^^

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