Paperless by the end of the decade?

11 March 2015

Interesting articles in the press earlier in the week about Patrick McLoughlin’s comments on phasing out paper tickets by 2020. A great ambition, but given how long Oyster has been around in London already and the difficulties and time taken in getting changes made to paper tickets to make them clearer and easier to use, it does raise questions about whether this enormous task is achievable in this timescale.

Our work on smart ticketing shows that passengers can really appreciate the benefits that better tickets and different ways of paying for travel can bring. This could be getting better value by being able to buy a season ticket for travel three days a week to fit in with work patterns – and to therefore save money on either daily tickets or a traditional season ticket. Or not having to worry about missing a train because the queue at the ticket office or vending machine is too long. Or not having to deal with what can happen if you lose your paper season ticket, which may have cost several thousand pounds.

It’s important that the new ways of ticketing is designed to meet passengers needs both now and in the future. Thinking about how much progress has been made in making it easier to tax a car, or to buy and use a cinema ticket…there are some great examples out there of what can be achieved.

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