Prague Metropolitan Transit to upgrade to a new innovative and convenient system
An end to unpopular validators, Lítačka (Prague municipal card) is linked to payment cards as well as tickets purchased with mobile application. All this will soon become reality in Prague and the Central Bohemian Region. These new ticketing features will be enabled by the Multichannel Fare Collection System, which has been approved for implementation by the Prague City Council.
Operátor ICT, a company owned by the City of Prague, was commissioned at the end of last year to implement the Municipal Multichannel Fare Collection System together with a dedicated project team including Operátor ICT, the Prague regional transport authority ROPID, the Central Bohemian Regional transport authority IDSK and experts from two major transit operators, the Prague Public Transport Company and the rail operator Czech Railways.
Prague Mayor Adriana Krnáčová said: „The entire system will be smarter and more convenient. We are fulfilling our promise to Prague residents that Lítačka will be a beneficial project that will be further developed to bring more functionality and technological innovations.“
Michal Fišer, Operátor ICT’s CEO, added: „This project will involve up to 2.6 mil. passengers and will bring many changes and improvements in the daily use of public transport.“
Managing Director Petr Tomčík of ROPID, Prague’s regional transport authority, explained the need for a co-ordinated approach: „Our common goal is to implement an integrated transport system that will cover both Prague with its metropolitan area and the entire Central Bohemian Region, which today is very heterogenous in transport coverage and its technical infrastructure. A greater metropolitan network of this type will also require a unified automated fare collection system. This is the reason we have been involved since the very start of the project.“
As the common Implementation Plan was approved by Prague’s Council today, passengers may enjoy the new features as early as next year.
Innovations for passengers
The new account-based ticketing system will be piloted in first half of 2018 and will bring the passengers more convenient ticketing options compared to the current system.
One of the many improvements is described by Mayor Krnáčová: „Season passes will be added to Lítačka via the web portal and mobile application, thus eliminating the current need for the physical top-up with the validators.“
Account-based architecture will enable passengers to register and use a contactless payment card or Czech Railways’ In Karta in place of the Lítačka card. Implementation will include a mobile application that allows convenient sales of both short-term tickets and season passes, passenger account maintenance as well as detailed information about tickets and pass validity.
„Our goal is to make public transport more comfortable for passengers. The new system will provide more fare purchase options but will maintain existing functions. Passengers will still be able to purchase a paper or premium SMS tickets,“ says Michal Fišer.
Direct investments for the project should not exceed CZK 43 mil. (EUR 1.7 mil.) with additional costs of CZK 23 mil. (EUR 0.9 mil.). Integrated fare collection systems in Prague and the Central Bohemian Region should also bring annual savings of up to CZK 50 mil. (EUR 1.9 mil.) thanks to efficient fare sales channels.