Ireland’s National Transport Authority (NTA) is to launch an account-based contactless ticketing solution on Dublin’s buses as a next step towards rolling out an integrated contactless fare payment system across the country’s bus, rail and other transport networks.
The NTA plans to implement “a cashless payment system to speed up passenger boarding ties” and introduce “a simpler fare structure, allowing seamless movement between different transport services without financial penalty”, the transport authority’s CEO Anne Graham said in a statement to the Irish parliament’s committee on transport and communications.
Graham did not specify when the new system would be launched on Dublin bus services but she did tell the committee that “the procurement of an account-based ticketing system to support new cashless payment forms is well underway”.
To date, passengers have been able to make contactless fare payments on public transportation services across Ireland using Transport for Ireland’s Leap transit card or by purchasing and activating digital tickets for selected bus services on their smartphone using an app trialled as part of the NTA’s ongoing Next Generation Ticketing (NGT) project.
“The demand and requirement for contactless account-based ticketing options is expected to increase substantially in the near future,” the NTA explains.
“The [NGT] project plans to improve the overall customer experience by enabling customers to use a debit or credit card or smartphone to pay for travel,” the NTA says.
“In addition, the payment methods will be smarter, offering a greater choice of payment options (not just auto top-up) and the ability for the best fare for customers to be automatically charged.”