Merseytravel's Walrus smart ticketing the one million mark
Merseytravel’s smart ticketing scheme which is claimed to be the most active outside London – has reached a milestone with a million tickets sold on Walrus cards since it was launched in November 2014. It says that more than 40 per cent of new UK smart cards issued during the last 12 months have been Walrus cards.
Tickets currently available in smart format are pre-paid weekly and adult four-weekly Solo tickets which can be used on any bus across Merseyside, and Saveaways off-peak day tickets for buses, trains and ferries.
Walrus cards can be loaded at around 800 PayPoint outlets across Merseyside, which has more than doubled the number of places from which Saveaways can be purchased and has increased the availability of Solos, which were originally available from only 50 outlets.
Merseytravel says that there are plans for more tickets on the Walrus card later this year including some commercial operators’ weekly bus tickets, subject to the Bus Alliance between Merseytravel, Arriva and Stagecoach being formally agreed.
“To go from no commercial smart ticketing scheme to one million ticket sales in just 15 months is incredible,” says Liam Robinson, Merseytravel chair. “Walrus is now the most active smart ticketing scheme outside London, yet we are still very much in the infancy of what is possible.
“Working with operators, we will, this year, broaden the ticket choice available, hand in hand with simplifying fare structures and zones to make it easier for people to tell whether the ticket they are buying is the best value for them.”
Andrew Jones, transport minister adds: “Smart ticketing is a key part of our plan to build a Northern Powerhouse and the Walrus card is a shining example that I want to see other areas follow”.