New top up app for Leap Card users

A Leap Card app update will allow users to top up their cards by mobile rather than in a shop, according to the National Transport Authority.

This new development will benefit commuters who previously had to purchase their top up in person or through an online ticket.

“The enhancements are being introduced in response to feedback from customers, and we believe they will improve the functionality of the app in a meaningful way,” said the NTA.

Other updates on the app include email receipts for top ups and purchases, and more ticket and card information screens.

Since 2016, Android users with NFC enabled phones have been able to check their balance and purchase collectible tickets on their leap card by touching a debit card against their phones.

NFC stands for Near-Field Communications and is essentially a way of transferring data to nearby technology without the need for Wi-Fi. It is the concept behind tap-and-go services such as Apple pay and Google Wallet.

“Being able to buy a 30-day rambler ticket on my phone gives me more freedom. I can now top it up on my phone rather than having to queue in a shop and possibly miss my bus. Email receipts also make it easier to trace if there’s been a mistake. Shops give receipts, why shouldn’t the app?” said Eoin Cooke, a first year student who commutes to DCU on Dublin Bus.

In March 2017 alone, there were 154,700 top ups made on the Leap Card app. It is hoped that this will increase as it becomes easier to purchase tickets through the app.

The NTA said “It is clear to us that the easier and more convenient we can make public transport, the more people will use it. Innovations such as Leap Card, the top-up app and our journey planner app do precisely that.”

The app is on in the Google Play store for Android users with NFC enabled phones. It is unavailable to Apple users because third-party apps with access to NFC devices are banned on the App store.

Orla Dwyer