A complex fare collection system (also known as automated fare collection AFC) covers a complete range of services for passengers as well as provides full system control thanks to the managing SW.
AFC deals with the distribution of fare documents, for example paper tickets or fare documents on contactless chip cards, using vending machines, points of sale, driver sale or online services. It subsequently provides validation of fare documents on the vehicle or at the station. Or, where appropriate, it allows for direct payment in cash, by cell phones, by using an electronic purse or a bank card. Sometimes validation is conncted with acess control using turnstiles and gates. Similarly important is follow-up work with the operating data obtained, its evaluation, clearing, the creation of reports and statistics, connection to related systems and so on.
Our broad portfolio of products allows for the creation of fare collection systems that suit the exact needs of each and every customer depending on the mode of transport, payment customs, tariff policy and a whole range of other factors.
Fare document distribution
Distribution devices are chosen according to the type of fare document or media. Most commonly used are paper tickets and contactless chip cards. Our devices enable to buy tickets from vending machines at stops/stations or from mobile machines on vehicles themselves, or indeed from the driver using a ticket issuing device. Tickets are also available from a network of other vendors. The same method can be used to distribute contactless cards, even though sales points are more commonly used for this purpose, primarily for cards that need to be personalised in some way. Passengers can then top-up their cards using vending machines or multi-purpose terminals, using the services of the driver or over the Internet. Other types of fare documents include mobile phone applications with NFC technology, SMS tickets or other types of cards.
The ways of validating fare documents differ depending on the type of transport. Most suitable for open systems such as bus or tram transport are onboard validators. Stationary validators, perhaps in connection with turnstiles and gates, are the best options for underground services, BRT (Bus Rapid Transit – overground metro) and railways. In addition to the validation of standard fare documents, direct payments using contactless bank cards (EMV) are also coming to the fore.
All operational data about transported passengers is automatically transferred to a data centre, where it is processed. Clearing is done and reports are created, as are statistics and output for linked systems. The system can be further optimised based on the operating data obtained, adapted to suit customers’ needs and developed. For this reason it is sometimes called an Intelligent Transport System, mainly in connection with other elements such as information systems for passengers, automated passenger counting, dispatching and monitoring.