Electronic Fee Collection - Articles and news items
Issue 6 2012 • 22 January 2013 • Leons Bemhens, Chairman of the Board, RP SIA Rīgas satiksme
During the last two years, Rīgas satiksme (the Riga public transport company) has continued its programme of significant changes by successfully developing the potential of electronic payment services, expanding the fleet of low-floor trams as well as achieving the best passenger satisfaction results in the last 14 years.
Riga keeps on developing electronic payments: On 1 May 2009, the Riga public transport company fully implemented a unified electronic payment system which enabled passengers to pay their fare electronically by means of e-tickets. The new payment system allows personification of customers with a much wider variety of tickets, as well as enabling payments via the internet. The implementation of the e-ticket resulted in new types of tickets, which immediately gained popularity among pass – engers (particularly those to be used for 10 or 20 trips). There is a wide range of e-tickets available to passengers: blue personalised and non-personalised plastic smartcards, yellow cardboard tickets, whose design is changed twice a year, and paper tickets sold by drivers, which are most frequently bought by nonfrequent public transport users and tourists. The latest version of the e-ticket, introduced on 21 November 2011, is valid for 50 trips. The ticket can be loaded onto blue (personalised and non-personalised) e-tickets.
Unlike 5.8 GHz based tolling systems, which rely on a stable and standardised technology, GNSS systems have many possible implementations although all based on the use of satellite localisation. The pioneering initiative of Toll Collect in Germany proved the feasibility of this technology for tolling but the European community now has to address the many challenges in the field of system architecture, standardisation, and technical and operational interoperability.
This article presents an overview of these challenges and the possible answers and decisions from all market stakeholders to transform these challenges into market opportunities.