NJ TRANSIT has begun its high-tech upgrade to fare collection on trains. Handheld mobile devices are being issued this week to train crews on the Raritan Valley Line (RVL). The mobile devices can scan and validate both paper tickets/passes and electronic tickets/passes displayed on the mobile app ultimately creating a more contactless passenger experience and improved ridership data.
The rollout of handheld mobile devices follows a previous pilot program which beta tested the concept and provided real world feedback in the design and implementation process. The deployment on the RVL will be conducted in stages over the next several weeks with small groups of crew members receiving and using the devices followed by a brief analysis to ensure successful implementation until all crew members are outfitted. The program will be evaluated before moving to other train lines in the NJ TRANSIT system.
Passengers will not need to take any different actions. Upon displaying their ticket or pass, either paper or through the mobile app, the train crew member will scan the barcode, including on monthly passes, rather than visually inspecting passes or punching paper tickets. Once scanned and validated, single-ride paper tickets will not be able to be used again. As the deployment moves across the entire system in the future, passengers eventually will not need to hand the crew member a paper ticket, creating a contactless experience.
By scanning all ticket types, NJ TRANSIT will have improved capability to collect and analyze data including fare collection and ridership trends. Electronic scanning also combats against the use of fraudulent tickets.
The handheld devices will support future applications including providing real time communication with conductors to enhance the flow of information to customers. Electronic scanning also provides future capability of enabling offline electronic ticketing, which would no longer require customers to have internet access to activate electronic tickets.
-via Press Release