Offline cards

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adamskiodp

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Mods, please move if in the wrong forum:D

I've just been reading an article about Metrobank MasterCard debit cards not working at some motorway toll booths which are offline. Has anyone had a problem using them with offline ticket machines on trains?

Thanks,

Adam
 
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najaB

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I've just been reading an article about Metrobank MasterCard debit cards not working at some motorway toll booths which are offline. Has anyone had a problem using them with offline ticket machines on trains?
I don't know specifically about Metrobank cards, but offline-only online-only cards won't work in the machines that guards carry aboard the train.
 
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Mojo

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I don't know specifically about Metrobank cards, but offline-only cards won't work in the machines that guards carry aboard the train.
Surely this should be online rather than offline? [/pedant] :)
 

tsr

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Metrobank cards are utterly useless in terms of railway commercial operations. Very, very few of them work in the PIN pads associated with Avantix ("Thyron" devices in my area), and worse still they are not recognised by handheld revenue inspection devices if the user has made a contactless payment for travel around London. The latter is very worrying because it must then be "assumed" that the user has the authority to pay for travel with the card, as it is not the passenger's fault that they can touch in but then not be inspected.

I wouldn't be surprised if they were rejected by payment infrastructure outside the railway and I would also not be surprised if any affected businesses started to reject them as methods of payment.
 
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richw

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Even with an offline card, the bank may impose an offline limit. My card has an offline limit somewhere between £20.50 and £41.00.
I discovered the limit buying tickets on the train, as declined buying wife and my tickets together but worked for separate transactions.
 

andrewkeith5

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Metrobank cards are utterly useless in terms of railway commercial operations. Very, very few of them work in the PIN pads associated with Avantix ("Thyron" devices in my area), and worse still they are not recognised by handheld revenue inspection devices if the user has made a contactless payment for travel around London. The latter is very worrying because it must then be "assumed" that the user has the authority to pay for travel with the card, as it is not the passenger's fault that they can touch in but then not be inspected.

I wouldn't be surprised if they were rejected by payment infrastructure outside the railway and I would also not be surprised if any affected businesses started to reject them as methods of payment.


I haven't had a problem in a good few years with my metro bank debit card, though it isn't used on the railway. It works happily enough on the M6 toll contactless terminals.

The problem is possibly to do with the fact that they are the only issuer of Debit MasterCard cards in the UK, and it took some retailers a little while to update their payment terminals to accept them. I assume the TOCs you're referring to still haven't.

It seems weird that the validators can't read the data though, I can't think why it would be different to any other contactless MasterCard in that respect.
 

button_boxer

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The problem is possibly to do with the fact that they are the only issuer of Debit MasterCard cards in the UK

Not true, Yorkshire Bank (and therefore presumably Clydesdale too) also issues Debit MasterCard cards, and has done since at least last June.
 

Mike395

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Metrobank cards are utterly useless in terms of railway commercial operations. Very, very few of them work in the PIN pads associated with Avantix ("Thyron" devices in my area), and worse still they are not recognised by handheld revenue inspection devices if the user has made a contactless payment for travel around London. The latter is very worrying because it must then be "assumed" that the user has the authority to pay for travel with the card, as it is not the passenger's fault that they can touch in but then not be inspected.

I wouldn't be surprised if they were rejected by payment infrastructure outside the railway and I would also not be surprised if any affected businesses started to reject them as methods of payment.

In my experience it's due to an insanely low per-transaction limit on offline transactions - in the region of £10. Also seems to be a relatively new thing - up until about 6 months ago I could purchase a £11.50 ticket from a Avantix-connected Thyron with no issue but now it doesn't have any of it and declines.
 

causton

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Not even completely then. There are times when the mobile device isn't going to get a signal.

Which mobile device?

If you mean the portable Oyster/ITSO/Contactless readers ticket examiners use, then it would be useless on a lot of the Underground if it needed a constant signal to work. I am quite sure that this is not the case... surely not...
 

TheEdge

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Metrobank cards are a menace. I have never come across one that has worked (in fact only yesterday I had one play up). I doubt the new kit will help much, I've always assumed its something to with the different design of chip Metrobank cards have.

We've been told the new equipment will need a 3G minimum connection to work so expect rural areas to still have problems.
 
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Metrobank cards are a menace. I have never come across one that has worked (in fact only yesterday I had one play up). I doubt the new kit will help much, I've always assumed its something to with the different design of chip Metrobank cards have.

We've been told the new equipment will need a 3G minimum connection to work so expect rural areas to still have problems.

But it will also be a multi sim so should be relatively reliable, plus it has the ability to queue transactions for processing so will accept anything under £30 (all to do with contactless I believe)
 

tsr

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In my experience it's due to an insanely low per-transaction limit on offline transactions - in the region of £10. Also seems to be a relatively new thing - up until about 6 months ago I could purchase a £11.50 ticket from a Avantix-connected Thyron with no issue but now it doesn't have any of it and declines.

By contrast, my experience tells me that it's barely worth even trying the Chip & PIN method as I've only had one work in the last year or so. This includes fares as low as a couple of pounds. Interestingly I don't think I've ever tried a transaction beyond about £15 with one.
 

Agent_c

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Which mobile device?

If you mean the portable Oyster/ITSO/Contactless readers ticket examiners use, then it would be useless on a lot of the Underground if it needed a constant signal to work. I am quite sure that this is not the case... surely not...

Whatever mobile ticket selling device is being used on a remote rural line. If there's no signal, there's no signal.
 

Mojo

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Whatever mobile ticket selling device is being used on a remote rural line. If there's no signal, there's no signal.
They don't connect to the internet at all.
 

TheEdge

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Then how are you authorising the card transaction?

Cards self authorise offline and when the pinpad gets plugged in at the end of day the transaction is processed.

Many cards have effectively "hidden" offline limits. Either they have a transaction value limit (unknown to the owner) or are online only cards (unknown to the owner as Electron/Maestro are no longer separate brands), these won't work in offline terminals.
 

Agent_c

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Cards self authorise offline and when the pinpad gets plugged in at the end of day the transaction is processed.

Many cards have effectively "hidden" offline limits. Either they have a transaction value limit (unknown to the owner) or are online only cards (unknown to the owner as Electron/Maestro are no longer separate brands), these won't work in offline terminals.

Which is my original point. You've got a offline or low limit online card, and no mobile signal. If no mobile signal apparently isn't an issue anymore, how are you authorising that card?
 
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Which is my original point. You've got a offline or low limit online card, and no mobile signal. If no mobile signal apparently isn't an issue anymore, how are you authorising that card?

You don't, it declines and you agree to go back if possible in an area where you know the signal is better.
 

leymoo

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You don't, it declines and you agree to go back if possible in an area where you know the signal is better.

Or in my case 9 years ago, getting kicked off the train. I had no means to buy an anytime return from Hinckley to Atherstone at 06:20 at the time (ticket office opened after the train I needed at 6:34am, and i was forced to go that early as there were only 4 trains a day that stopped at Atherstone in the relevant direction) so I was forced to buy off the train. I had a Basic Bank Account with Lloyds with no offline auth, so when the machine lost signal close to Nuneaton, it would decline and there wouldn't usually be time to re-try the transaction before I got off, leaving the guard in an awkward position as if he kicked me off the train there was little he could do. This would repeat ad infinitum 5 days a week until I moved back to the South East :oops:.

I usually had around 10mins for my transfer at Nuneaton, so I'd go into the ticket office at Nuneaton where my card would be accepted.

But it got frustrating that both the guard didn't understand that I had means to pay, and that my bank wouldn't acknowledge the existence of offline auth on their cards. I just kept to having cash for the fare to hand in the absence of a genuine answer, and eventually bought a bike when I'd saved up.
 

gray1404

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How do you find out of your card is an offline card or not?

My cards are a Barclays current account card (non contactless) visa debit
Nationwide Flex Account visa debit (contactless)
Nationwide select visa credit card (non contactless)
 

najaB

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How do you find out of your card is an offline card or not?
The easy ways to tell have all disappeared. The last reliable method was the application ID that shows on the receipt, but it's been reported on the forum that there are now online-only cards that report the same AID as offline-capable cars.
 

richw

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How do you find out of your card is an offline card or not?

My cards are a Barclays current account card (non contactless) visa debit
Nationwide Flex Account visa debit (contactless)
Nationwide select visa credit card (non contactless)

If it's contactless it's almost certain to be offline as most contactless transactions are offline, hence the speed of transaction and also not showing deducted from available balance for a day or two.

Non contactless I'm not sure how to tell.
 

headshot119

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If it's contactless it's almost certain to be offline as most contactless transactions are offline, hence the speed of transaction and also not showing deducted from available balance for a day or two.

Non contactless I'm not sure how to tell.

But it then depends on what offline auth limit the card issuer has set on the card.

I have a few contactless cards and one won't work offline over £30 (the contactless limit) whereas another one I've bought over a £100 worth offline.
 

richw

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But it then depends on what offline auth limit the card issuer has set on the card.

I have a few contactless cards and one won't work offline over £30 (the contactless limit) whereas another one I've bought over a £100 worth offline.

Mine has an offline limit somewhere between £20.50 and £41.00. Could well be the £30.
 

cool110

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Another way of telling if a card is online only is to check the card number against the booklets of small print. For example an RBS card beginning with 4751 16, 4762 30, 4762 31 or 4762 34 is online only.
 
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