Oyster-style card for Bristol buses within a year
BUS users in the Bristol area could have their own Oyster- style travel card within the next 12 months.
Transport bosses are hoping to launch the card sometime early next year.
But it will not be introduced until the technology has been thoroughly tested in trials which have already begun.
The card will mean bus users will be able to store money on plastic and use it to pay for bus journeys.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
In parallel to the card, the bus experts are devising a multi-ticketing scheme so users can buy one ticket but use any bus to reach their destination.
The idea is to introduce four zones for a multi-ticket:
â BristolRider to cover the Bristol urban area
â BristolRider Plus to cover a much wider commuter zone
â AvonRider to cover the former Avon area
â WestonRider to cover Weston-super-Mare.
There will be adult, child and student ticket types for each zone. It is hoped to introduce this scheme next April.
The multi-tickets and cards will be available on buses or online.
Bristol's transport leader Tim Kent has welcomed the new measures and said: "This is something that Bristol bus users have been wanting for a long time.
"It will mean one ticket, one price, any bus."
He said the difference between the new multi-ticket and a current all-day ticket is that it will not matter which company runs the bus you hop on to.
Mr Kent said: "You don't have to worry who is running the bus – you only have to think about your destination."
He said bus users would have more choice over which buses they used and therefore increase competition between bus operators.
Members of the West of England Partnership's joint transport executive will be given a progress report on the smart card and multi-ticketing on Tuesday.
Bristol's biggest bus operator, First, has already made it clear that it wants to see a smart card ticketing system in the city as soon as possible.
It hopes the card will encourage more people to use buses instead of relying on their cars to travel to work or shop in the city.
The firm has said a combination of soaring fuel prices, falling demand in struggling areas and cuts in subsidies has meant that some of its bus franchises are struggling.
Oyster is a plastic smart card which many people in London use instead of paper tickets.
They are used on the Underground, buses, and some trains, with users topping them up as they go along.
A spokeswoman for the West of England Partnership said it wanted to introduce the new measures as soon as possible but could not do so until they were sure that the technology was robust.
The smart card would still mean bus users would have to talk to the driver because fares vary for different types of ticket.
Multi-ticketing is already being tried out in Bath where bus users can buy a BathRider ticket.
Smart cards are expected to be tried out first on Bristol three park and ride services – Brislington, Long Ashton, and Portway.
Both Bristol University and UWE are hoping to introduce smart ticketing for students during the autumn.
The partnership – which represents the four councils in the former Avon area – cannot force bus companies to sign up to the multi-ticketing scheme, they can only encourage them to do so.
The aim is to eventually marry up multi-ticketing with smart cards but the technology is complex and would probably be introduced in phased stages.
It began to devise the new ticketing systems after the Government provided £2.2 million funding.
In years to come, it is hoped to extend smart card technology to trains so there is a fully-integrated payment scheme for any form of public transport.
Eventually, we should be able to hop on to a bus, train or ferry and pay for any journey using a mobile phone.