MRT Jakarta, the city’s first rapid transit system, has finally opened for commercial use on 1 April 2019. The service is offering commuters a 50 per cent discount on all fares for the entirety of April to encourage people to use the new rail service. The 50 per cent discount applies to all trips on the MRT Jakarta, regardless of the distance travelled.

The official launch of the rapid transit system follows two weeks of trial run that was open to the public. The trial run was also free of charge, allowing commuters the opportunity to test the speed and efficiency of the new mode of transportation. MRT Jakarta was inaugurated on March 24.

Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said in a written statement on Sunday that city-owned MRT Jakarta, which operates the new service, had requested the half-price fares to urge people to try the new public transportation service and to spread word on the MRT.

Anies added that the strategy also intended “to educate the people to shift their transportation culture from using private vehicles to public transportation”. Jakarta has an estimated population of 10 million which results in heavy traffic congestion. The implementation of a rapid transit system would be a step in the right direction in alleviating some of the traffic and air pollution issues the city faces.

The MRT Jakarta’s first route spans 15.8 kilometres from Lebak Bulus station in South Jakarta to the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in Central Jakarta.

People can travel on the rapid transit service, which employs a cashless fare payment system, using a single-trip MRT Jakarta card or the Jak Lingko card. Other accepted payment forms are electronic cash cards issued by state-owned lenders Mandiri (e-money), BRI (brizzi), and BNI (tap cash), as well as those issued by private lender BCA (flazz) and city-owned lender DKI (Jakarta One).

A single-trip MRT Jakarta card can be purchased at the stations through ticket machines or ticket counters for Rp 15,000.