Merseytravel smart tickets are now available at nearly 800 retail outlets across Merseyside thanks to a partnership between ACT and payment provider, Paypoint. Now passengers can top up their smart cards quickly and easily, close to where they live and work, making travel in Merseyside easier and more convenient than ever.
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“To deliver this vision, Merseytravel launched its Walrus smartcard scheme through the PayPoint retail network in November 2014, powered by ACT technology.”
“The ACT Smart Enable platform allowed us to make tickets available in far more locations than was previously possible.”
“We’re delighted that the scheme has been such a tremendous success, and our three-way partnership with ACT and PayPoint has played a big part in it.”
Transport authorities are tasked with delivering efficient, affordable, convenient public transport services for local people. To deliver this vision, Merseytravel launched its Walrus smartcard scheme through the PayPoint retail network in November 2014, powered by ACT technology.
By February 2016, the Walrus scheme had reached a major milestone with a million smart tickets sold. Liz Chandler, SRO for Walrus Smarter Ticketing, says, “To go from no commercial smart ticketing scheme to one million ticket sales in just 15 months was incredible.”
Tickets available for customers on their Walrus smartcards include various types of “Solo” ticket, which can be used on any bus across Merseyside, and a “SaveAway” ticket, which is an off-peak day ticket for use on local bus, train and ferry services. Additional tickets are going to be added to the scheme to further improve passenger value and convenience.
The key to realising this vision was the ACT Smart Enable platform utilising the PayPoint retail network, which manages all the ITSO transactions needed to load travel tickets on Walrus cards. This allows retailers to sell Solo and SaveAway tickets via PayPoint Point-of-Sale (POS) terminals, opening the way to a widespread retail presence in the Merseyside area.
Liz Chandler says, “By ITSO- enabling smart ticket sales from PayPoint terminals, the ACT Smart Enable platform allowed us to make tickets available in far more locations than was previously possible.”
With the right infrastructure to support greater customer convenience, Merseytravel partnered with ACT’s Channel Partner, PayPoint, which offers a range of in-store payment services for customers.
Lewis Alcraft, Commercial Director at PayPoint, says, “Customers can use our in- store terminals to pay bills, transfer money, top up their mobile phones and buy digital vouchers – all at a convenient location close to where they live and work. We saw the addition of Walrus tickets as a great fit for our business, and a fantastic benefit for our customers, who can now load their travel tickets quickly and easily at nearly 800 locations across Merseyside.”
By providing retail points across the Merseyside area, PayPoint is a key enabler for bringing passengers greater convenience and value. Louise Robertson, Senior Project Manager, ACT, says,
“The fact that customers can buy their smart tickets at any one of the nearly 800 outlets saves them a huge amount of time and provides a much more convenient experience for them. It’s a clear example of how ACT and our partners enable a more passenger-centric, convenient public transport experience.”
With greatly increased retail availability for smart tickets, the Merseytravel Walrus smartcard scheme reached a new milestone in March 2017 with 2 million tickets sold. “The greatly expanded retail network and the increased convenience for passengers is reflected in our ticket sales,” says Liz Chandler. “We’re delighted that the scheme has been such a tremendous success, and our three-way partnership with ACT and PayPoint has played a big part in it.”
By partnering with PayPoint, the ACT Smart Enable platform is helping to maximise passenger convenience across the UK.
“In addition to the 800 locations in Merseyside, passengers in other regions are making use of our Cloud Ticketing Platform. For example, you can buy smart tickets at 1,334 PayPoint locations across the Greater Manchester area thanks to our Smart Enable platform,” says Gary Watts, CEO, ACT. “Additionally, Cardiff Bus passengers can buy and top up their smart cards at over 180 PayPoint outlets, making the experience incredibly fast and convenient.”
With successful implementations across the country, many other local transport authorities are partnering with ACT and third-party payment providers. “With the ACT Smart Enable platform, selling smart tickets no longer requires ITSO- compliant terminals,” says Gary Watts. “As a result, we’ve opened up the market and greatly expanded the retail network for ITSO ticketing, which is key to maximising passenger convenience and ticket sales.”