In May 2021, Govia Thameslink Railways (GTR), a train operating company that operates the Thameslink, Southern, Gatwick Express, and Great Northern rail franchise in England launched a joint pilot project with FAIRTIQ to test their simple mobile account based ticketing solution across the whole GTR railway network.
The pilot project was launched with a clear focus of helping solve the public transport challenges in digital retail ticketing space:
- Simplify fares for customers
There are over 55 million fares available in the UK and 50 types of tickets just between London and Birmingham.
- Aspiration to help simplify digital ticketing and drive digital adoption
“An obvious way to make rail more attractive to passengers is to make it easier for people to pay. The unnecessary cost and complexity of today’s railways are epitomised in the complicated, paper-based ticket-selling process which inconveniences passengers but also costs more than half a billion pounds a year to administer. Everyone loses”. - Williams-Shapps p. 65
- Provide a cross-city journeys solution for seamless and frictionless public transport traveling experience
- Validate mobile-based multi-modal PAYG integrated ticketing in the UK
The basis for the first phase was testing FAIRTIQ's core technology (journey mapping) on different traveling scenarios among a group of test users. In the first phase journey mapping accuracy was 98%.
FAIRTIQ geo-location technology was able to track a test user’s journey from train to bus and back to train again. Technology can solve the integrated travel challenges identified in the Williams-Shapps plan for Rail and align with the national Bus Back Better strategy.
“An obvious way to make rail more attractive to passengers is to make it easier for people to pay. The unnecessary cost and complexity of today’s railways are epitomised in the complicated, paper-based ticket-selling process which inconveniences passengers but also costs more than half a billion pounds a year to administer. Everyone loses”. - Williams-Shapps plan for Rail p. 65
During the first phase 100% of possibility to check-in/check-out was achieved on test users mobile phones. FAIRTIQ geo-location technology was able to track a test user’s journeys on the whole Govia Thameslink Railways Network including cities like Brighton or Luton. Seamless cross-city traveling showcase on Govia Thameslink Railways network demonstrates the potential for turning UK government’s ambition for an integrated ticketing into reality:
‘We’re sharing government's ambition for an integrated ticketing approach to allow passengers to buy a through journey for local bus, rail and metro with a single tap on a smartphone’ - Transport for North response to Bus Back Better strategy
Users love the simplicity of using public transport with FAIRTIQ
Another focus point for the first phase was collecting feedback from GTR test users on seamless mobile automatic ticketing based on the check-in/check-out approach.
According to a survey, 100% of test users said that the FAIRTIQ app was easy to use:
- "Very easy to use with minimal instruction"
- "Good design, white background, and clear text. Easy to use scrabble bar for starting journeys. History is also easily accessed"
- "Easy and simple to use. Able to access previous journeys"
Started as a pilot project within the GTR network the approach could be quickly expanded to other parts of public transport. With the "Ticketing- as-a-Service"-approach it can serve as a solution that is neutral and could be applied across all modes of public transport as well as across all operators.
Simonas Kukšas, Business Development Manager, Nordics & Baltics
"I‘m an all-around person with technical savviness and entrepreneurship spirit because I graduated from a technical university where I gained an aeronautical engineering bachelor's degree, but I always had a high interest in business development. That's why I participated in and successfully completed 3 business accelerator programs in Finland and Lithuania. This background is salted with experience in a sustainable mobility business development field. All of these experiences and knowledge will be used in my new occupational journey at FAIRTIQ as a business development manager for expansion in the UK and Nordics!
My vision for the future is to become a true master in the business development field and solve real problems with FAIRTIQ which would bring positive impact not even for the people, but also for the environment!"