Chiltern Railways launched a pioneering new approach to ticketing at Marylebone station, with an integrated mobile ticketing system that enables passengers to buy, instantly receive and validate tickets through an app on their mobile phone.
For the first time, passengers arriving at a station without a ticket will be able to get through the barrier within seconds, without needing to queue at ticket offices, contact a call centre or negotiate ticket machines. The application can be used from anywhere and remembers favourite journeys and payment card details, so that travel can be made with just a few key presses.
This innovation marks the first time that any rail passengers have been able to use both Smartphones and everyday handsets to buy and receive rail tickets through one transaction. An additional differentiator is that unlike most commercial booking services, the Chiltern Railways application does not charge a booking fee, and the application is free to download. To get the application passengers just need to text ‘Chiltern’ to 88600 or search the relevant app stores.
‘This innovation in ticketing is a first within the rail industry and comes at a time when we are investing £250 million on our route to transform rail travel to and from London,’ comments Thomas Ableman, marketing director, Chiltern Railways. ‘The Chiltern Mainline will reduce journey times significantly and our app ensures that passengers spend far less time searching for, queuing, buying and printing tickets. Rigorous usability testing means that we are confident our app is simple and easy to use for all passengers and we are delighted to have developed this industry first by making ticketing faster at a time when we’re also doing the same to our trains.’
The application has been developed with partners Atos Origin and Masabi.