The government plans to ease an age restriction for debit cards to help teenagers more easily pay bus and subway fares, officials said on June 26.
Currently, consumers over 14 years old can get a debit card in their own names. From the third quarter of this year, the age restriction will be lowered to 12 years old, the Financial Services Commission said in a statement.
In Korea, most debit cards can be used to pay for public transit. Teenagers without debit cards can use rechargeable smart cards to pay transit fares, but users of such cards have to deal with the inconvenience of charging them.
A daily spending limit for debit cards issued for customers aged between 12 and 13 years old will be set at 30,000 won (US$26.90), according to the FSC.
If the age restriction is eased, the FSC said as many as 370,000 customers aged between 12 and 13 years old, or 40 percent of the age bracket, will get debit cards.
FSC Chairman Choi Jong-ku held a meeting with chief executives of credit card firms earlier in the day during which they discussed plans for the easing of the age restriction.
By Song Seung-hyun and newswires (firstname.lastname@example.org