New mobile ticketing technology arriving next year will give DART customers a way to bypass long lines at vending machines during big events, buy passes for several riders at once, and carry a ticket in their smartphones.
Coming in spring 2013, this new mobile ticketing tool, one of a handful among U.S. transit agencies, is being developed by Unwire. The Danish company has extensive experience in mobile ticketing for transit agencies, including the systems in Stockholm and Copenhagen, Denmark. DART will be its first U.S. client. DART's Board of Directors awarded the nearly $1.5 million contract in late September.
"It offers the customer one-stop shopping for transit products, eliminating the need for a rider to search on multiple websites, and the rider can have the correct ticket delivered directly to their phone," DART Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer David Leininger said.
Customers from the T in Fort Worth and the Denton County Transportation Authority will have access to the same technology when it launches, maintaining a seamless regional transit fare system.
Customers will be able to use credit cards to purchase any of the ticket types used by the transit agencies. They'll simply register a credit card once and purchase whatever pass they need when they need with just a few touches on their smartphone screen.
The phone will display both an actual ticket and a QR code that can be scanned by DART police and fare enforcement officers to help conduct quick fare inspections. Customers ultimately will be able to purchase other products, such as an event pass or a parking pass, providing even greater convenience and value.