Shenzhen Transport card (Shenzhentong Ka)
The Shenzhen Tong Card is Shenzhen’s public transport card. The card can be used for all metro travel, all bus travel and a few taxis (about 100 taxis out of 11,000 on the roads is trialing at the moment).
The card can also be used in various one stop shops like Vingo, some 7-11′s and some Chinese branded stores. Although it is the same system as HK’s Octopus Card, it is still not as readily usable as it is in HK. However, it is slowly building up momentum and by the time of the University games, the system should be available for use in places such as KFC and McDonald’s.
There has also been a major move recently to combine the Octopus System and the Shenzhen Tong System, with a trial of dual chip cards that can be used on both sides of the boarder. This should also be complete by the time the University games comes along.
To purchase a Shenzhen Tong Card, go to any booth at any Metro Station and ask for a “Shenzhen Tong ka.” Give them 100rmb. The metro workers will put 50RMB down as deposit and put 50RMB credit in the card. The deposit will be given back to you when you return the card (obviously, only if you are desperate for money or leaving Shenzhen for an extended period of time).
When you use the card, you get a little less than 10% discount on your travel, which over the years adds up. The main convenience, however, is that you don’t need to change cards and you don’t need to worry about losing the little green token on the metro.