Arriva, a leading European passenger transport provider, and Ticketer, one of the UK’s largest Electronic Ticket Machine (ETM) suppliers have joined forces to take the hassle out of catching the bus for Arriva passengers. The roll out of new contactless ETMs to 3,500 buses will begin in November and be complete by summer 2019.
The project will replace every on-board ticket machine with Ticketer units, which also accept QR codes, mTickets, Apple Pay and Android Pay.
Neil Shah, Digital & Commercial Platforms Director, Arriva UK Bus, said: “Advances in technology are changing expectations of how we access products and services in all areas of our lives, including transport. Arriva passengers expect us to keep up, so we are adapting to make travel faster and seamless for them.”
The switch to Ticketer follows a successful six-month trial in Guildford, by the end of which nearly 30% of transactions were contactless.
During that trial Arriva Bus saw a steep increase in passengers using contactless, particularly across weekends, suggesting that younger passengers may be taking advantage of the service and moving out of the parental taxi service.
As well as helping to make travel more convenient for passengers, Arriva UK Bus expects that contactless payments will reduce the cost of cash collection and processing as well as incidents of fraud. In addition, faster processing of transactions will reduce waiting times and ensure services run on time.
Neil Shah continues, “This is a clear way in which technology helps us match customer need with commercial sense. Of course, we also hope it will encourage more people out of their cars and onto a bus, reducing congestion and pollution on our roads.
“We will have access to key information about how passengers use buses so can track how they respond to this new service and learn from it.
Ticketer’s back office provides real-time information about transactions and bus locations, giving managers valuable data to improve services to suit its customers, and allowing them to send important messages to drivers. Drivers and depot managers at Guildford were full of praise for the Ticketer ETMs and the Ticketer portal.”
Cornelie Alecsandrescu, the lucky driver who took the 100,000th contactless ticket sale in Guildford.
John Clarfelt, Managing Director of Ticketer, concludes: “We are so proud of the fact that our team is now working with Arriva to supply our contactless ETMs in such a short space of time. It is a seemingly ambitious timescale but we are up to the challenge and more than capable of delivering in yet another record time.”