Saturday, 31 July 2021

‘Smart’ tickets on the way for tram passengers

PASSENGERS in Prestwich and Whitefield will be able to use a single smart card for all their journeys on the trams or buses from the summer, transport bosses have confirmed. Transport for Greater Manchester’s (TfGM) is rolling out its smart ticketing system in conjunction with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority. The next phase for the system will be to make bus and tram travel using a single smart card possible for the first time. For passengers, it means that they will be able to buy and add any of the current Metrolink ticket range to their smart cards, or use any smart card for combined bus and tram tickets. In 2015 TfGM and more than 30 bus operators introduced the first smart tickets for buses. These enabled passengers to travel on any operator’s service and it is this scheme which will be offering combined bus and tram tickets on smart cards from the summer. Greater Manchester Mayor Tony Lloyd said: “I want Greater Manchester to have a world class transport system and effective smart ticketing has to be a cornerstone of that ambition. “While there is still work to be done, I’m pleased that passengers will soon be able to make bus and tram journeys across Greater Manchester with a single smart card. “Passengers have made clear that smart ticketing should be a priority and these improvements bring us closer to delivering the integrated, world class system that Greater Manchester and the North of England expect.” The report also reveals that ‘contactless account-based ticketing’ – where passengers use their bank card to touch in and touch out instead of a smart card – is planned to be rolled out on Metrolink from 2019.

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