Transport User Voice – March 2018 – “Technology is great – we still want friendly staff though”

22 February 2018

Passengers excited at potential impact of technology, but not at the expense of friendly staff.

Transport Focus in partnership with High Speed 2 (HS2) published its Using passenger insight to aid High Speed 2 Design report earlier this month. The report explores how the railway of the future should look by working with a customer community to learn from its experiences to date and understand its wishes for the future.

The customer community – a panel of 38 passengers – provided its thoughts and opinions on three areas of a journey: payment and ticketing, luggage and catering. While the passengers are excited by the potential for technology, they do not want it to be at the expense of having friendly staff on hand.

Chief executive Anthony Smith said:

“Passengers tell us that they want a stress-free experience. They hope new technology will let them take more control of, and personalise, their journey experience. It’s important that the railway builds trust in its passengers by considering what they want right from the planning stages. We’ve been pleased to see findings from this work pop up in HS2’s plans.”

Top ‘asks’ for HS2 were:

  • a ‘travel wallet’ where ticketing is paperless and passengers have everything they need for their journey (for example, tickets, maps and timetables) in one digital location
  • stations facilities that consider the needs of those with luggage, such as large toilet cubicles
  • a ticketing system that directs passengers to the best place to board
  • secure storage space on the train with nearby seats so luggage can be easily accessed or checked on
  • good food quality and customer service.

Transport Focus will continue to work alongside HS2 for another year, aiming to provide valuable insights into the experiences of the everyday traveller. Click here to read the report in full.

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