Bus passengers in the Australian city of Geelong are unhappy with their experiences so far using the Myki contactless smart card for fare payments, according to a report in The Age newspaper. Consumers in Geelong are testing the smart card fare system, which officials are rolling out for public transit throughout the state of Victoria. Last month, though, government officials in Victoria said the Myki prepaid scheme had overcharged users (CardLine Global, 23 Oct). Consumers also have complained about malfunctioning card readers. In Geelong, riders have complained about being overcharged for rides. Officials from the road-transport authority of Geelong did not respond to a request for comment from CardLine Global. The news comes as officials prepare to introduce the system in Melbourne by the end of the year. Matthew Sinclair, executive director with Australia-based Carpadium Consulting, tells CardLine Global that if Myki operators cannot get the system working in a town the size of Geelong, with a population of about 162,000, then the scheme likely will fail in a city as large as Melbourne, with a population of about 4 million. "And this will be a big problem because Melbournites are big users of public transport," he says. "They have a fantastic tram system that is very well patronized, and if people are overcharged or if the tickets don't work properly, it could cause big problems."

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