London Assembly raises questions about TfL open fare payment plans

Even as major U.S. transit properties are moving toward open fare payment systems, the London Assembly raised questions about Transport for London’s (UK) plans to do the same. In a new report, the Assembly’s Transport Committee calls for guarantees from Tfl that plans to introduce wave-and-pay ticketing will provide a high level of security and will not leave out passengers without credit or debit cards. The report sets out five principles:

  • Provide the highest possible security for passengers’ personal information.
  • Trained staff should be available to provide customer support.
  • Passengers should have access to details of their transport expenditures.
  • Passengers without bank cards should not miss out on the lowest fares.
  • Any new ticketing system should be compatible with those provided by other transport operators.

“It’s only right that Transport for London is looking to new technologies to enhance its ticketing offer, but many passengers are skeptical about using bank cards as tickets, and others simply won’t be able to,” said committee chair Caroline Pidgeon. “If contactless payment is to prove successful we would expect to see a far more detailed and compelling case for its introduction.”  The committee has asked TfL to report back on these issues. TfL plans to accept bank card payments on its buses in time for the 2012 Olympics. Link to full story in MayorWatch.

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