Huh, got rebate?

Sometimes it does pays to read between the lines…

(Rebate for using the “bottle-neck”)

First, read this:-

Those who frequently ply the Damansara-Puchong Highway (LDP) can look forward to special rebates under the newly-launched Frequent Travellers Programme.

Cash users will be given a free Touch ’n Go card worth RM15, including a RM10 load value, if they provide RM50 worth of LDP receipts collected within a month.

(From TheStar)

Sounds very attractive but please do read further. The news continues with this:-

Existing Touch ’n Go or SmartTAG users who spend at least RM200 a month will be eligible for a free 20% reload bonus when they top up.

Then if one reads further on the “terms and conditions” this is what stated:-

Entitled to redeem 1 card per person* (subject to change) and need to enclose identity card for confirmation and record purposes

In other words, you are going to get only 1 TNG card under this deal during your lifetime.

Corporate users, salesman and sorry bastards who need to go through 2 – 3 Litrak tolls per day will be happy to get this deal. Considering the millions that were robbed from us, no thanks to the lopsided agreement, a monthly rebate of RM10 – RM20 is not much – perhaps enough to take a group of friends for teh-tarik session but at least, better something than nothing.

What about those who monthly toll charges is more than RM50 but less than RM200? The situation has not changed much for us. We are still paying through our noses for a jammed up highway and the cost seems to be going higher and higher over the last few years.

What is happening to the plans to buy back the highway concessionaires? Or the improvement of public transport so that the number of cars on the highway is reduced (but not necessarily means the toll charges or compensation will go down)?

Until something is done to reduce the toll burden for majority of the LDP users, the nearest thing for some kind of leeway is this Frequent Travellers Programme. However, unfortunately it does not work for all. Consider this:-

  1. Collect cash receipts for RM50 (as per the terms and conditions, it must be in pristine condition)
  2. Then take those receipts and exchange it with a TNG card which comes with a RM10 reload value (but then the exchange is only available at “selected” outlets and certain time of the day)
  3. “Armed” with TNG card, the only way to continue to enjoy the benefits under the programme is to spend more than RM200 per month using the TNG card. Otherwise, all you will get is a RM10 rebate and worthless plastic card (and you cannot collect another RM50 worth of receipts for another RM10 rebate)

To be fair, Litrak have been doing major resurfacing of the highway for the last few months, something we appreciate during normal driving but having a “customer loyalty program” that is very limited in nature still does not excuse the fact that the public is at the receiving end of lopsided agreement.

For the money that we been paying all these years, we expect a better deal from Litrak. After all, they have good part of Puchong and Damansara well locked down with toll booths.

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