Train tickets are about to look more boring

Train tickets are about to look more boring

We all know that train tickets are orange and beige, with those lovely rounded corners. They're very comforting in their familiarity. However, that's all about to change.

In the next few months, if you buy a train ticket on board, you won't get the real deal, but rather, something that looks like a receipt you'd get from a restaurant.

A number of train companies in the UK are rolling this out, and indeed, some already have this in place.

Arriva, who have these new tickets on the Cardiff-Treherbert line said: “The ticket itself will contain exactly the same information."

"The big change will be it is no longer printed on the same orange card. What you get will be probably very similar to what you get at a restaurant, a printer paper receipt."

"It will also contain a barcode that allows you to open the ticket barriers."

Scotrail and Great Western Railway will be doing this too, so don't worry if you think you're being fobbed off with a crappy ticket.

It's obvious that just printing on paper, rather than special tickets, is going to save train companies a lot of money.

At Scotrail, a spokesperson said that they were doing it because "the new equipment will be lighter, faster and able to accept online and contactless payments."

One problem, is that these new tickets may not do as well in your wallet, as the old ones did. The classic ticket is the same size as your bank card, which is great for storage.

A paper receipt could get very tatty, very quickly, which is a problem if you're trying to get through a ticket barrier, or putting them in with your tax return.

That said, it is a small gripe if we all get access to cheaper train fares. Provided, of course, any savings are passed on by train companies.

It looks like train companies will be adopting mobile ticketing soon, too. It's a good idea, as most people have a smartphone now, and sending tickets straight to your phone is environmentally better than printing tickets off.

E-tickets will be better for train companies when offering discounts, or reduced train fares on the fly.

Along with phones that are NFC-enabled, so passengers can pay for journeys by tapping their phone on a contactless reader, it looks like the ticket as we know it could soon be a thing of the past.

1 comment

  • paulusb

    Yeh, cos we all know they're going to pass on the savings...!

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