Pop Pay As You Go with Google Pay FAQs

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What is Pop PAYG with Google Pay?
Pop Pay As You Go (PAYG) is the smart way to pay for public transport in North East England, and if you have an NFC (Near Field Communication) Android smartphone you can now buy and store PAYG balance on it in Google Pay, and travel on Metro using your phone instead of a Pop PAYG smartcard. 

Simply top up your Pop PAYG balance in your Google Pay ticket by selecting ‘Add money to balance’  or at a Metro Ticket Machine and use it to pay for your Metro journeys as you make them. 

Where can I use Pop PAYG on Android?
You can only use Pop PAYG on Android to travel on Metro. If you use Pop PAYG to travel on the Shields Ferry or on local buses, you should continue to use a Pop PAYG smartcard. 

Where are the benefits of Pop PAYG on Android?
Using Pop PAYG on Android means you no longer need a separate smartcard to travel on Metro at PAYG prices. Just add balance in your Google Pay account and use your smartphone to touch in and out at Metro station gates and validators.

How can I get Pop PAYG on Android?
To use Pop PAYG on Android you need an Android smartphone with NFC (Near Field Communication) and a Google Pay account. 
In your Google Pay account, select Add a card, then Public transport and Pop under North East England, UK. You can then choose to purchase either £5.00, £10.00 or £20.00 balance, which you pay for using Google Pay.

How do I top up my Pop PAYG on Android balance?
You can top up your balance by selecting ‘Add money to balance’ in your Google Pay ticket or at a Metro Ticket Machine.

How do I check my Pop PAYG on Android balance?
You can check your PAYG balance on your ticket displayed in your Google Pay account,  it will also be shown on the Metro station gate or validator every time you touch out.  You can also check your balance at Metro Ticket Machines by placing your smartphone to the orange reader. 

Can I transfer my Pop PAYG smartcard balance to Pop PAYG on Android?
You can’t transfer balance on your Pop PAYG smartcard to Pop PAYG on Android. If you wish to switch from using a smartcard to Android for PAYG on Metro, you’ll need to either use up the balance on your Pop PAYG smartcard or apply for a refund of the unused balance, and start using Pop PAYG on Android separately.

What if I have a negative Pop PAYG on Android balance?
On Metro, you can’t start a journey if you have a negative Pop PAYG on Android balance (ie less than zero), so you need to top up your balance or find another way to pay for your journey.
If your balance is in credit when you touch in at a Metro station, we’ll give you one last trip to make sure you can get to where you need to be, even if making another journey will take you into a negative balance. You then can’t use Pop PAYG on Android again until you top up.

What if I realise that Pop PAYG on Android isn't for me?
If you change your mind about using Pop PAYG on Android, you can apply for a refund on any unused balance by selecting the ‘Request a refund’ option in your Google Pay account.

Is Pop PAYG available on other smartphone operating systems?
At the moment Pop PAYG is only available for Android devices, but we’ll continue to seek to increase its availability on other operating systems. 

What happens if my phone runs out of battery whilst I’m travelling?
You need to ensure that your smartphone can display your Pop PAYG on Android Ticket at all times when travelling. If you are unable to display your Ticket, you will need to buy an alternative ticket for your journey or you will be liable for a Penalty Fare and/or prosecution

Using Pop PAYG on Android

How does Pop PAYG on Android work?
You need to touch in at the start of your journey and touch out at the end. You do this by touching your smartphone onto the reader on the yellow Metro station validator or the orange card reader on the Metro station gates – even if they’re open.
If you don't do this, you won't have a validated product and you could be issued with a Penalty Fare Notice.
When you touch in at the start of your journey, we deduct up to the cost of an all zone single Pop PAYG fare from your Pop PAYG balance. When you touch out at the end of your journey, we calculate the cheapest fare for that journey and then adjust your balance.
Please note that you can't use your Pop PAYG on Android balance to buy tickets from Metro station ticket machines.

How much does it cost?
Pop PAYG is cheaper than adult Single and Day tickets.
You can travel as many times as you like in a day. You will be charged each time you travel until you reach the daily price cap for the number of zones you’ve travelled in. You’ll never pay more than the daily price cap for the number of zones you’ve travelled in that day as long as you touch in and out.
Please note that if you’re using Pop PAYG on Android more than 3 or 4 days a week, it might be cheaper to buy a Metro Season Ticket. See nexus.org.uk/metro for more information and current Pop PAYG fares.

What happens if I can't touch in or out?
If you can't touch in or out, your journey will be incomplete and you may be charged a maximum fare.
You should make your journey as planned, and touch in or out where you can.

If you are charged the maximum fare because you were unable to complete your journey you can request a ‘Close Your Journey refund’.  Select the ‘Request a Refund’ link within your Google Pay ticket and follow the links to the  ‘Close Your Journey’ form.   

What happens if I forget to touch in or out?
If you don’t touch in or out, your journey will be incomplete and you may be charged a maximum fare.
Because we don’t know where you either started or ended your journey, we are unable to calculate the cheapest fare, so we deduct a maximum fare of up to the cost of an all zone single Pop PAYG fare from your balance for that journey.
If you forget to touch in or out, select the ‘Refund Request’ link within  your Google Pay ticket and follow the links for the ‘Close Your Journey’ form to apply for a refund and close your journey.
You can only ask us to close your journey once a calendar month, so remember to touch in and out.

Why can’t I use Pop PAYG on Android on the Shields Ferry or buses?
The Shields Ferry and local buses use different types of ticketing infrastructure to Metro, which aren’t currently configured to accept Pop PAYG on Android, but we’re working to introduce it in the future. 

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