Finding the right change for a bus fare will soon be a thing of the past in Hampshire, as the County Council and bus operators First, Go South Coast and Stagecoach have pledged, this week, to bring forward investment in contactless payment technology.
Councillor Rob Humby, Executive Member for Environment and Transport at Hampshire County Council, said: “Our work with bus operators over the years has resulted in near record bus use in Hampshire.
“Hampshire residents deserve a modern bus service and this investment means that close to 900 buses will soon be fitted with contactless payment technology for people to pay by debit or credit cards, with around half of the buses having this installed before the summer. Paying by card makes buying a bus fare easier for passengers and quicker for bus drivers, speeding up overall journey times. It is another improvement to buses which already have free WiFi on board and audio / visual next stop announcements which are invaluable both to visitors unfamiliar with the county, as well as people with sensory limitations.”
As a result of additional Government funding for bus travel, the County Council is able to support operators to bring forward investment in technology improvements for passengers. This means that Hampshire buses will benefit from a total investment of over £1.6 million, speeding up the installation of contactless technology in 2017.
Contactless payment facilities will be available on
199 buses operated by Go South Coast including Bluestar, More buses and Unilink from April 2017
395 buses operated by Stagecoach, including Kings City and Gold from July 2017
300 First buses by the end of 2017
Funding has been agreed for successful grant applications from bus operators which demonstrated a commitment to a minimum of 25% matched funding, were already operating in Hampshire, and prioritised the installation of contactless payments.