Traditionally fare collection for bus services around the globe has involved issuing paper tickets in exchange for cash and expensive fare boxes in order to turn the bus into a shop when passengers get onboard.
This process has led to innovative bus operators and agencies looking for better ways of running their fare collection process in order to reduce the amount of time the bus is stationary at each bus stop (dwell time), reduce the cost of collecting and processing cash and providing a more convenient and seamless way to being able to board and travel.
At Masabi we supplying fare collection services to over 20 bus agencies around the globe, from operators with a few buses to large multimodal cities.
In the past, bus agencies and operators either gave you old fashioned paper tickets, magnetic tickets or smartcards. This meant that they needed complex infrastructure to facilitate the payment and validate the ticket, as well as to distribute the pieces of plastic or paper that allowed riders to travel. The future of ticketing turns this approach around and tries to remove both expensive single purpose infrastructure and the need to issue a piece of paper or plastic, saving agencies money. This is the approach we call BYOT (Bring Your Own Ticket).
Masabi’s 7 step ‘Mobile First’ approach to fare collection moves agencies to a BYOT set up, enabling organisations to save money and revolutionise the passenger experience. The process starts with mobile ticketing, which can be live in a few weeks, and progresses to Account Based Ticketing using a mobile phone, smartcard or contactless bank card and enabling Mobility as a Service.
A branded application is crucial in order to ensure agencies have an online presence and can use the application to enable Account Based Ticketing and Mobility as a Service. A branded application gives agencies a significant advantage as adoption rates are much higher as there is instant trust with the brand.
Tickets have to be available to passengers offline. If the ticketing provider selected does not offer offline ticket activation users will stop using the service and adoption will suffer (and customer service complaints will be high).
At Masabi mobile is the first step on the road to delivering full fare collection following our BYOT philosophy – reducing the cost of fare collection for agencies. We are able to enable validation, account-based fares and MaaS, revolutionising fare collection and the rider experience.
Mobile Tickets That Only Work When Online Infuriate Passengers and Reduce Uptake.
Bad coverage has always been the number one complaint of mobile phone users everywhere, and despite the continued evolution to 4G and soon 5G networks, the problem is not going away. Networks are getting more bandwidth but coverage still isn’t universal.
An important factor has emerged as a major driver for the adoption of mobile ticketing for busses: congestion.
In the report The Impact of Congestion on Bus Passengers for bus industry campaign group Greener Journeys, Professor David Begg identified a link dating back to the 1960s between increasing journey times and declining patronage.
Among his recommendations to reverse this trend was to speed up the adoption of smart ticketing, which has a demonstrable effect in reducing dwell times at bus stops, speeding up overall journey times.