The “smart card” transport ticket system for buses and trams finally has a launch date

ByRochelle W. Stone

Jun 30, 2016

Ticket cards that can be used for “seamless travel” through buses AND trams will be launched next year.

And they will be extended to trains within five years, the transport bosses have promised.

Manchester will also benefit from London-style contactless bank card payment “by 2021”.

The long-awaited “smart ticketing” is aimed at all customers who can use a single transport card on public transport.

But it hit the buffers last year when transport bosses tore up the project’s contract after “considerable” delays.

Entrepreneur Atos did not roll out the program last summer as planned, so Transport for Greater Manchester executives abandoned the company.

But they insist he is now back on track.

Since November of last year there is an app for traveling on Metrolink.

Launched in 2014, there is also a Metrolink “Get Me There” card, but it is only available to holders of discounted travel passes.

The buses also have a smart card which can be used by all operators.

But the goal for next year is for the card to be accessible to ALL passengers for use on trams AND buses.

Manchester will also benefit from London-style contactless bank card payment

It is also hoped that passengers will be able to purchase smart cards at Metrolink ticket machines as well as online.

Further improvements are planned over the next five years.

These would allow passengers to use their bank cards to get in and out, like in London – with a first rollout on Metrolink.

There will also be a “smart cap” system, calculating the best fare for passengers and recognizing their bank cards.

Rail travel will also be added to the capacity of the smart card.

The plan is due for review today by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.

Stephen Rhodes, director of customer operations for TfGM, said it would allow “seamless travel” in Greater Manchester.

He added, “Smart ticketing works best for customers when it’s simple and straightforward to use. After taking the time to review our progress to date and carefully consider how we should proceed, we are now ready to take these next steps. “

“We got off to a good start on our smart journey and we still have a way to go to reach our destination, but now we have a roadmap and a realistic timeline to get there. “

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