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The Auckland Regional Council is currently working with Auckland�s public transport operators to develop an integrated ticketing system for the Auckland Region

What is an integrated ticket?
An integrated ticket is a ticket that passengers can use to travel on any scheduled public transport service in the Auckland Region. That is, it is fully interchangeable between:
  • Different types of transport (rail, bus and ferry) and
  • Different operators (eg, between Stagecoach Auckland and Howick and Eastern Buses).

Why does Auckland need an integrated ticket?
Market research has shown repeatedly that Aucklanders want an �integrated� public transport system. An integrated system is coordinated to make it as easy as possible for passengers to make their journeys using a mixture of different types of transport and different services. An integrated ticket will help to coordinate public transport services in the Auckland region, as it will make it possible for passengers to use a single ticket for all of their travel. Other features such as improved transport interchanges (eg, the new Britomart station) and better connections between services will help also.

How will the integrated ticketing system work?
  • The ticket itself will be a contactless smartcard. It will be used for all prepaid transactions (ie, for all trips other than cash trips).
  • Customers will be able to purchase and �top up� their balance on these prepaid cards at a wide range of agencies around the region, at ticketing machines and, potentially, by phone and internet.
  • To validate their prepaid tickets when they make a trip, customers will �wave� their cards past a card reader as they board a bus, ferry or train. The card reader will automatically deduct the correct fare for the journey, in much the same way as most bus companies� current ticketing systems.
  • Where customers use more than one service on their journey a clearing house will split the fare paid between the different operators they use.

How will public transport users benefit from the integrated ticketing system?
  • Convenience: customers will benefit from the convenience of being able to use one ticket to travel around the region. This will be particularly useful for customers who:
    • Use several services to make their journey. (The number of people who do this is likely to increase over time.)
    • Use more than one competing service (eg, different bus companies) to make their journey.
  • Faster boarding times for bus: bus customers will be able to board their buses more quickly than they can at present. The new contactless technology will enable them to wave their ticket in front of a card reader instead of inserting it into the reader to validate their ticket. These time savings will, in turn, speed up overall travel times for bus services.
  • Improved services: the new technology will have operating benefits for transport operators. As a result, we expect that they will be able to improve the frequency and reliability of some services over time.

When will the integrated ticketing system be in place?
The integrated ticketing project is a long and complex one. It will take approximately five years to complete. This is because:
  • There are a large number of different parties involved, including nine different public transport operators. The Auckland Regional Council needs the support of all parties to make this system work.
  • This is an information technology project. The technology is still relatively new and there is not a lot of international experience to call on. In addition it is an expensive project and a technically complex one. We need to specify the project very carefully to get the best results, choose our supplier carefully and implement the technology in a systematic way.
  • The system will need a large amount of public funding. It will take some time to secure this funding.
This timetable is based on experience with overseas systems and with comparable systems in Brisbane and Sydney in particular.

At what stage is the project currently?
The preliminary work to design the system is now complete. The ARC is currently working with public transport operators, Infrastructure Auckland and Transfund New Zealand to secure the funding needed to purchase the new ticketing system.

This page updated July 2002

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