Using Myki from within a wallet

For $1.35 billion, you’d hope there would be some benefits to Myki. Here’s one: if you take a little care, it can be used from within a wallet. So you need never take it out, unless an inspector needs to see it.

At least once this has enabled me to validate and jump on a train that I would have missed if I’d had to get my Metcard out, stick it physically into the validator, then pull it back out again.

Of course it’s not guaranteed to work in all wallets, but if it’s on one side, and held flat on the scanner (and the same advice as usual applies: don’t wave/”swipe” it, hold it still), and there aren’t any similar cards in there that confuse the scanner, then you’ll probably be in luck.

Hint: Don’t try it out for the first time at a busy station with a queue of people behind you.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

11 replies on “Using Myki from within a wallet”

I can’t get this to work on the green scanners as one of my credit cards interferes and I get a “multiple cards detected” error. Interestingly though, it’s fine on the “frankenbarriers” at Melbourne Central.

This has only worked about 50% of the time I’ve tried it. Some Myki readers don’t seem to be sensitive enough and the reader will either not see the card or will struggle to read it. What’s worse is if it does see the card it gives me no feedback that it’s trying to read it, so I end up standing there feeling dumb holding my wallet up to the reader for 5+ seconds…

I’ve had trouble with it saying ‘multiple cards detected’ or just failing to work when the Myki card is in my wallet.

It seems that credit cards with chips in them can interfere with the field generated by the Myki reader, confusing its badly built self. I’ve put my Myki card in the wallet slot closest to the outside of the wallet and moved the credit cards as far from it (thickness-wise) as possible, and that seems to stop the multiple cards error, but some readers are still not good enough to read it through a wallet.

A colleague who lived in London used to keep his in his wallet, in his jacket pocket, and that worked. So we’ve obviously got some equipment far below that standard.

Quite the opposite happened to me.
My student yearly, which had been working perfectly for days before decided not to work. I tried all the validators (this was at Box Hill) but none of them would let me in. In the end, I had to go to the staffed lane, and by the time I got to the platform, I got to see a train leave.
Thanks a lot myki, thanks to you, I missed my train. At least the next train was only 3 minutes away. Any longer, and I would’ve complained.
And strangely enough, the myki worked that afternoon, even back at Box Hill.

Ozzmosis, yeah, would be good if the scanner responded in some way to show it detected the card and was processing.

Philip, I have a CBA card with an RFID chip; I’ve moved it into a pocket that makes it further away from where the Myki card is, which I think helps. Others certainly report other cards (unclear what technology) which cause problems.

The scanners are all off-the-shelf devices, but who knows how they’ve been configured.

As I always carry my ticket in my shirt or jacket pocket, this feature is not of much use to me.

Good effort in the Age, Daniel.

I always use Myki from my wallet. The only time it failed to work was when I had my wallet the wrong way around and tried to validate the side without a Myki in it…

Why do you need mare than one rfid card? In a perfect world, one GUID in a wallet should let you do it all. (sadly, we live in an imperfect world, personified by Myki.)

In China you only need one RFID card – you can add all kinds of services to your national ID card. But try suggesting we do that here and it’s an affront to our freedom. People desperately want one card for everything until you actually offer it to them.

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