Free Nol cards for special needs people
It is now possible for the permanently disabled people - Emiratis or residents - to obtain free Nol Blue cards to use them in public transport means across Dubai. Likewise, seniors (Emiratis only) and students (Emiratis and residents) can avail a 50 per cent discount per cent fare on RTA's mass transit modes comprising the metro and public buses in their daily travels within the Emirate of Dubai.
The above announcement was made by Dr Aysha Al Busmait, Director of Marketing and Corporate Communication, and Acting Director of Customers Service, who also added: "RTA is keen on uplifting the quality of all services delivered to various community segments including the permanently disabled persons, seniors and students of various age groups through availing them all means and facilities that make the use of public transport means a highly safe, smooth and enjoyable experience."
The Nol card dedicated for the use of permanently disabled persons, seniors and students is valid for five years maximum starting from the date of issue.
The card will include information such as the category (special needs, seniors, and students), name '&' photo of holder, and expiry date. The Automatic Fare Collection Card Dep't has issued the 3-categories card in mid of last March and stressed that the use of such card in traveling on board public transit modes is exclusively meant for holders and no other person is entitled to use them according to RTA's regulations in force." "Persons special needs who are assessed with a permanent disability as well as seniors and students can obtain their blue Nol cards online through, or by visiting RTA offices in the Metro and Public Bus stations in Dubai Emirate after completing the application form and attaching the required supporting documents along with a one-time payment; which includes a AED20 as an initial credit in the e-purse of the Card, and the user will not be asked to pay this amount once more unless upon the renewal of the card.
"Among the other features of the card is that the holder will have an account balance out of the amount paid at the time of applying for the card, and the user is entitled to use this balance in paying for parking fees or buying Nol Red Tickets for other persons." "The use of card permit issued to seniors is confined to citizens of the UAE aged 60 and above and the holder will get a 50 per cent discount on the fare applicable to the general users of Nol Blue cards.
"The third category of these five to 23 who are in regular studies at all school grades as well as students of Universities, colleges and institutes. Students applying for this card have to satisfy a certain set of conditions, which include that the student has to be enrolled as a regular and full timer, and the academic institution (school, university, college or institute) has to be accredited by the Ministry of Education, Knowledge and Human Development Authority in Dubai, Commission for Academic Accreditation, and Ministry of Higher Education. Additionally, the applicant has to submit a letter duly signed and stamped by the above official academic entities describing that the student is engaged in a regular course of study in the respective school, university, college, or institute.
Students holding Nol Cards will also get a 50 per cent discount on the normal fare applicable to Nol Blue Cards public users. However, these permits are divided into five different categories as per students' age groups. The first category will be for the age bracket 5-14 with a validity of five years maximum. The second category will be dedicated to students aged 15 with a validity period offour years maximum. The third category will be dedicated to students aged (16) with a validity period of three years maximum. The fourth category will be dedicated to students aged (17) with a validity period of two years. The fifth category will be dedicated to students aged (18-23) with one-year validity. In case the permit's validity expires whereas the card is still valid, regular rates will automatically be applicable.
Emirati students studying abroad at the expense of the UAE's Ministry of Higher Education may obtain this card to use it during their stay in the Emirate of Dubai provided that they attach an affiliation certificate issued from the overseas university where they study.
The documents required for obtaining this card in respect of all categories include a valid national identity card, and personal photo with a white background. The applicant has to pay the card issuing fees of Dh70, produce a valid disabled card issued by the Ministry of Social Affairs for people with permanent disability, and a letter signed and sealed by the official academic institution to which the student is affiliated.
"The applicant has to be wary and accurate when filling the application. If a discrepancy is found, a normal Blue Nol Card will be issued without recourse to the applicant, who will only be eligible to obtain one permit." "The card will be dispatched within two weeks from the date of receipt of the application via Express Mail (Courier) to the residence or work address for free. An SMS will be sent to the applicant informing him/her on the progress made in processing her/his application," said Dr. Aysha.
It is worth mentioning that the Nol card service has been nominated for the ("Dubai Model" of Service Delivery) initiative since this service is dynamically related to a large number of objectives of Dubai Emirate in general and RTA in particular. Considerable numbers of Nol cards are circulated among a big chunk of public transport users either online or through the sale centres, and the service is oriented to diverse and broad community segments compared to other services. This service can be upgraded in a short time span during which results can be assessed. Moreover, the service is also characterised by documented operations together with key performance indicators capable of measuring the efficiency of its operations.
Five government departments, including Roads and Transport Authority, have been chosen for the application of the (Dubai Model) initiative for the delivery of services. Nol Card Service has been selected as one of RTA's vital services to contribute to the implementation of this Dubai Model Initiative.
Highlighting the other advantages of this vital service, Dr Aysha Al Busmait said: "Customers can top up their Nol Cards through SMS, ATMs, and Nol website (www.nol.ae) as well as various kiosks such as those operated by Etisalat, Du and Axiom Co. outlets. The multiplicity of Nol card sale channels and outlets render Nol cards easily and quickly obtainable; which will undoubtedly prove instrumental to raising the ridership of mass transit means in the emirate of Dubai besides a host of other advantages made available to different segments of community."
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