In a UK-wide collaboration, transport technology companies Passenger and Ticketer are working together to ensure that UK bus operators are able to deliver the most accurate information possible for their passengers during times of extreme change and uncertainty.
Ticketer reports that buses are still transporting 11% of their usual traveller numbers – including key workers, key worker’s children and those who require public transport to travel to shops and medical appointments.
To help bus users over the coming weeks, Ticketer, smart ticketing systems supplier and Passenger, a public transport app provider will roll out Passenger’s Live Buses capability to all its operator customers. Live vehicle tracking on Passenger apps and websites will show travellers exactly where buses are on interactive maps, as operators continue to adjust timetables around key worker needs.
After seeing the challenges operators face keeping frequently keeping timetable data up to date, the teams at Passenger and Ticketer wanted to help. By offering Live Buses to operators, they hope to help keep the country moving at this difficult time. Passenger CEO Tom Quay explains “Scheduler teams are under huge pressure right now to make complex timetable adjustments and get the data published into every IT system that needs it. Given the unprecedented number of changes taking place, operators simply cannot update their realtime systems quickly enough. It is imperative that travellers can rely on getting the most accurate information possible. Showing the physical location of a bus in apps and websites is the best way to provide confidence that the bus is on its way, for anyone who has to travel.”
Over the next few days, the teams at Passenger and Ticketer will work closely to ensure that operators under pressure will have the functionality enabled as quickly as possible.
Ticketer will help automate the process by enabling vehicle monitoring (SIRI-VM) feeds for operators who would otherwise use a combination of timetable data and bus stop monitoring to update their feeds. “We are delighted to work with our industry colleagues at Passenger to make this happen. Now, more than ever, it’s important for key industry alliances to form, to work together to put the needs of our operators first. Allowing operators to show bus locations on their apps will help key workers and those making essential journeys during these difficult times” said John Clarfelt, CEO at Ticketer.
Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps’ recent letter to the Association of Local Bus Company Managers (ALBUM) made it clear that the government understood the importance of bus services to communities, key workers and people taking essential journeys. Rt Hon Shapps wrote: “I cannot stress enough the importance of first class communication to passengers and local authorities, so that those for whom travel remains essential are absolutely clear about what buses will be running where and when.”