Nieuws - 14 september 2006

Teething problems paying with electronic wallet

The introduction of the chipknip has not been without problems. Many staff and students were unaware of the changes and did not have the right card. The chipknip, or electronic wallet, cannot be topped up in all buildings, and the prepaid cards for those who do not yet have a chipknip are expensive. The consequences: massive borrowing, many misunderstandings and long queues to pay in the canteens

Since 1 September it has no longer been possible to pay with money in the canteens in Wageningen. You have to use a chipknip, and you can only get a chipknip if you have an account with a Dutch bank. Once you are in possession of a chipknip you will also eventually be able to use it to pay for printing, copying and buying books. Ultimately there will be a combined ID card that will be used for gaining access to buildings and for paying.

In addition to the practical problems that the introduction of the chipknip has caused, a number of people have ‘ideological’ objections. In their eyes it is the foreign students and guests who only spend a short time in the Netherlands that are the victims. These are the people with no Dutch bank account who are therefore forced to buy a prepaid card. For a card with 10 or 20 euros of credit you have to pay 2 euros administration costs.

The facilities management group says the introduction has gone relatively smoothly. Two weeks later they think most people have got used to paying with a chipknip in the canteens, even though the photos above would suggest otherwise. Changes take time and there are always teething problems.