Fare Payments as a Service is a new and better way of delivering ticketing systems to transit agencies and riders. Instead of purchasing a bespoke Automatic Fare Collection (AFC) system, agencies can now sign up to a service delivered via a Fare Payments platform removing the cost, risk and complexity of providing the latest fare payment innovations and allowing agencies to concentrate on what they do best, operating safe, reliable and convenient transit services to riders.
The purchase and use of Automated Fare Collection (AFC) systems has traditionally followed the same cycle. Solutions are procured in a highly prescriptive way. This results in a bespoke system being build as its own dedicated solution for that agency who then operate and maintain the same system for decades. This leaves a significant proportion of agencies locked out of the latest ticketing innovations, or requiring deep pockets to keep up with the pace of technology change.
Transit agencies have always purchased their own bespoke Automated Fare Collection (AFC) systems. These solutions are expensive to build, maintain and update and come with problems which are no longer necessary:
Agencies are overpaying unnecessarily for fare collection by buying bespoke technology.
Fare collection deployments using bespoke technology can take years to go live.
Bespoke system do not benefit from regular free updates (unless a significant amount of money is spent).
Bespoke systems tend to be closed in nature and difficult to connect with new systems or enable MaaS (without expense).
Fare Payments as a Service offers a new and better way of providing fare payment services to agencies. Instead of needing to run a design and build project to deliver a bespoke system, agencies can sign up to a Fare Payments platform paying for services on a pay as you go/subscription basis. This enables agencies to deliver the latest ‘tap and ride’ innovations to riders extremely quickly and grow capabilities as they get regularly released onto the platform. By running procurements based on outcomes and holding vendors to targets and KPIs, agencies can free up technology providers to offer the best solutions to problems not building solutions to meet detailed specifications. There are a number of Fare Payment as a Service characteristics which are important to mention;
Reduced capital, maintenance and update costs.
Once functionality is added to the platform it’s super quick to deploy.
New functionality is delivered regularly to everyone.
An open API centric architecture means the platform can link to existing (or new) systems.
A roadmap of new features and capabilities removes the complexity of running ticketing services and allows agencies to keep up with the pace of technology change.
Enabling MaaS for public transit is a key requirement as agencies look to attract more people to leave their cars at home.
Enabling concession, cash digitization and dematerialization with a digital-first approach, saving money and increasing convenience.
Fare Payments as a Service enables the delivery of tickets but also facilitate the latest account-based ticketing experiences, meaning riders no longer need to buy a ticket or understand fares to travel.