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Transdev Keighley buses are reporting that passengers are already
getting the hang of using their new smartcard ticket machines after
just a week.
Since Sunday 27 November, people with English National
Concessionary Travel Scheme (ENCTS) passes have been among the
first in the region to be able to swipe their pass on the new
ticket readers when boarding Transdev Keighley services.
"The message we are getting back is that when boarding,
pass-holders have taken quite naturally to swiping their card at
the same time as telling the driver their destination," said
Transdev Keighley commercial director, Geoff Lomax. "It seems to be
a combination of people seeing others using the new machines,
trying it for themselves, information sessions at Keighley Bus
Station and the news about them spreading through the town's
In the future 'Oyster-style' smartcards which are currently
being developed by Metro and its partners will make using public
transport more convenient for passengers. Fewer people needing to
pay cash for individual tickets will help to improve the
punctuality of bus services by reducing boarding times.
"I am pleased to hear that Keighley passengers are taking to
using Smartcards like 'an Oyster to water', said Metro Chairman
Cllr James Lewis. "This is a step forward in the process of
introducing Smartcards and we will be using the feedback from this
Although there have been a few passengers whose passes would not
scan, due to a problem with the chips in individual passes, they
have been able to continue using their passes by showing them to
the driver as before.
To speed up the roll-out process for the Smartcard scheme, Metro
agreed last month to provide funding for smaller bus operators to
install the card reader ticket machines.
The larger companies have already starting programmes to equip
their vehicles. Arriva has recently introduced smartcard ticket
machines to its vehicles used on services in the Dewsbury and
The need for Smartcard readers will be written into the
franchises for local rail services when they are renewed in 2013,
to ensure the system to be used on local train services,
This is a step towards the introduction of a scheme which will
eventually enable passengers will to charge up their cards, at a
network of retail outlets such as Travel Centres or online, with
cash to be used for journeys across West Yorkshire and beyond. The
cards can also be used to show the concessions to which people are
entitled, which is how they will be used for the first pilot scheme
in the Keighley area.