Smartcards better value than other tickets, say passengers

23 September 2013

Almost three in four smartcard users (71 per cent) were satisfied with value for money compared to just over half (55 per cent) of regular bus users, says a new survey from the passenger watchdog.

Smarter technology encouraged people to use the bus more, and more than three quarters of those asked were positive about being able to use a smart ticket across more than one operator.

Passenger Focus published these and other findings as part of a study of the Oxford SmartZone scheme. Smart ticketing: Oxford SmartZone is the second in a series of reports exploring passengers’ attitudes to smart ticketing.

Anthony Smith, Passenger Focus chief executive, said:
“Passengers tell us that they value having flexible ticket options that are easy to use – and this research is proof that a well designed and implemented smart ticketing system can encourage people to start using the bus more.”

Key findings of the Smart ticketing: Oxford SmartZone research were:

  • 28 per cent of smartcard users said that they were using buses more since getting a smartcard
  • overall satisfaction with bus services in Oxford was 89 per cent for smartcard users and 88 per cent for other ticket users
  • passengers were positive about being able to use smartcards with different operators (76 per cent agreed), saving money (75 per cent) and having a better choice of tickets (58 per cent)
  • there is a perception that the smartcard scheme is not suitable for less-frequent bus users. Passengers who used buses less than twice a week said that they were unlikely to use or want a smartcard.

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