Smart ticketing – what rail passengers want – July 2013
08 July 2013
Passengers are increasingly coming to expect services to be delivered to them in smarter ways as technology becomes a bigger part of everyday life.
We believe that the introduction of smarter ticketing in public transport could make life easier – and cheaper – for passengers. For this to happen though, it is essential that any smarter ticketing schemes are well designed and properly implemented.
In order to make sure that the passenger is at the heart of the development – that products are designed for ease of use rather than what is convenient to administer – we have started a wide-ranging research programme on smart ticketing, on behalf of the Department for Transport (DfT).
Over the next 18 months we will further explore needs and attitudes before smart ticketing is introduced more widely, and evaluate existing and pilot smart ticketing schemes. The reports we produce will provide guidance for transport operators setting up smartcard schemes.
This report, the first in the programme, considers views and needs around smarter ticketing among rail commuters in the South East. It is particularly relevant because smart tickets will be available for use on all rail services, across all operators in the region, under the South East Flexible Ticketing programme (SEFT).
Our in-depth study has found that there is clearly an appetite for smarter ticketing among commuting rail passengers, both in terms of moving the ticket format from paper tickets for added convenience, and in being able to access more innovative and flexible ticket types as a result, so saving money.
While the research focussed on the South East, and includes respondents who are generally familiar with Oyster in London, the results are relevant nationwide and indicate some key principles that any introduction of smart ticketing should address.