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Image credit: Klaus Vedfelt via Getty Images

Visa will help bring tap-to-pay to more buses and subways

You could pay for a bus ride with your phone or watch.
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Klaus Vedfelt via Getty Images

Tap-to-pay is incredibly convenient for mass transit, but it's also incredibly inconsistent. There's no guarantee you'll find it in every big city, let alone smaller burgs that can't justify revamping their turnstiles. Visa wants to fix that -- it's partnering with Planeta Informatica on a new Secure Access Module that brings tap-to-pay to existing public transportation systems. Your bus or subway network wouldn't have to throw everything out to let you pay with your contactless card, smartphone or watch.

The two companies are working with Ingenico to implement the module in Rio de Janeiro's Metro Rio in late April. There's no guarantee you'll see it spread to your city, but technology like this may be more a question of "when" than "if." Tap-based riding is more convenient, of course, but it also cuts out the overhead that comes with tickets. An upgrade to your commute could actually save companies money in the long run, especially if it leads to more riders.

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