Visa Inc. has launched the first Visa-branded, multifunction prepaid card in Singapore that enables users to pay for trips on Singapore’s public transportation system and for purchases at merchants that accept Visa cards for payment, the card company announced April 22.

DBS Bank Ltd. is issuing the cards, which have both a magnetic stripe and a contactless chip. “The magnetic stripe will allow cardholders to make purchases at the point of sale in a similar way to Visa credit and debit cards,” a Visa spokesperson says. Consumers also may tap the cards on Contactless e-Purse Application Standard readers for transit payments on all public buses and subway trains in Singapore, she says.

DBS Bank is tying the card launch to the inaugural Youth Olympic Games, to be held Aug. 14 to 26 in Singapore, with four versions–the Opening/Closing card, the Companion card, the Mascots card and the Champions card, the Visa spokesperson tells PaymentsSource, noting each supports the specific function its name infers.

The Opening/Closing card, for example, also serves as an entry ticket to the Games’ opening and closing events, she says. DBS Bank is making those cards available May 24 to June 7. The Companion card already is available and comes with paper tickets to the Olympic sporting events, the spokesperson says.

Consumers pay no fees for the Opening/Closing and Companion cards. However, the Mascots and Champions cards are collectors’ items, and DBS Bank will issue only 5,000 of each of those cards.

The issuer is selling the Mascots cards for S$50 (US$36 or 27 euros) per pair or for S$28 individually, the spokesperson says. Champions cards cost S$188 and come in a two-card gift pack and are preloaded with S$10 in each card account.

Cardholders may reload the accounts tied to all four card types with up to S$500 at DBS and POSB (formerly Post office Savings Bank) bank branches, online at, at Singapore Post branches and at AXS stations, which are multiapplication transaction terminals that support debit card, stored-value and other payment types, the spokesperson says.

Starting in August, consumers also may reload the cards at DBS and POSB ATMs.

The Youth Olympic Games Organizing Committee expects to sell more than 500,000 tickets to the event. The Visa spokesperson declined to project how many of the Visa prepaid cards DBS Bank will issue tied to the event. DBS officials did not respond to requests for comment.

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