person using contactless fare payment for public transportation

Top Considerations When Upgrading Public Transportation Ticket Readers

Taking the first step to upgrade your ticketing and fare collection devices may seem daunting without a clear understanding of the considerations and key decisions required to scope your project properly. Despite best intentions, new ticket reading systems can fail to integrate properly with existing systems and lack a future upgrade path. Planning your ticketing hardware upgrade correctly can preserve passenger experiences, prevent costly service disruptions and provide a needed competitive edge.

Know When to Act

Timing is everything. External forces can often influence the ease of hardware upgrades, as well as delivery timelines. Urban modernization initiatives, technology integrations and competitive pressures are all catalysts for adopting more dynamic ticket reading solutions.

There is no doubt that the time to update public transportation ticket readers and validators to accept contactless payments for an Automated Fare Collection (AFC) system is now. A well-considered approach to upgrading will help eliminate internal resistance, garner more organizational support and put you on the course for realizing revenue growth faster. Get ready to start your upgrade >>

Case Study — New Ticket Validator Speeds Up Onboarding and Saves Money

Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) deployed an HID ticket validator that was compatible with the existing mobile ticketing app and scalable for future growth. Passenger boarding times were reduced, mobile ticketing grew, and JTA realized savings in excess of $40,000.

See how JTA did it >>

Ticketing Hardware Upgrade Considerations

Transitioning to an AFC system with contactless payments requires proper planning to ensure the best front-end ticketing hardware and vendor is selected. The following key considerations can help to identify the best AFC system for your organization: 

  1. Look for an experienced vendor with a successful track record of providing hardware for implementations at large transit authorities worldwide and reading compatibility with multiple modes of transportation ticketing.
  2. Assess how the ticket reader will integrate with the ticket validator and the other parts of your ticketing ecosystem — and look for cost-effective, fully integrated options.
  3. Consider non-proprietary hardware, compatible with common standards such as ITxPT, for easy integration with on-board devices and vehicle computers.
  4. Prioritize a flexible hardware solution with open architecture devices that allow for easy integration with ticketing software from numerous payment service providers and platforms. Open architecture devices are usually better able to accommodate incremental future ticketing trends.
  5. Look for multi-technology readers that offer passengers a single touchpoint for ticket validation and contactless payments. Converged technology in the ticket readers and validators can support scanned QR or barcodes, closed-loop RFID and open-loop contactless payment cards to accommodate passenger preferences for a variety of fare payment types.

Taking the Next Step

These key considerations provide valuable guidance when planning a ticketing hardware upgrade. Modern public transportation ticket readers and validators need to include contactless fare payment technology reliable enough to facilitate swift boarding times, and flexible enough to work with a variety of payment service providers.

Learn more in this executive brief Key Considerations When Upgrading Public Transportation Ticketing Hardware.

Following the acquisition of Access-IS, HID has extensive experience developing mass transit industry ticketing hardware solutions. We work with systems integrators and payment service providers to support the mobile ticketing upgrade projects of public transportation authorities globally. Find out how HID ticketing technologies help create a seamless, intuitive user experience >>