Southern and Thameslink install e-ticket readers at 11 additional stations
By encouraging passengers to use e-tickets, the two train operators can ensure social distancing and limit the spread of COVID-19.
Credit: Govia Thameslink Railway
Passengers can now travel using Southern and Thameslink smartphone e-tickets at more railway stations in Sussex and Surrey, UK, which help people to socially distance, subsequently preventing the spread of COVID-19.
E-ticket barcode readers have recently been installed on ticket gates at 11 additional stations across the two networks, and include: Hassocks, Burgess Hill, Haywards Heath, Three Bridges, Horsham, Crawley, Dorking, Leatherhead, Ashtead, East Grinstead and Oxted stations.
They allow passengers to scan e-tickets bought via the Southern OnTrack app, Thameslink OnTrack app or online at each operator’s website and can be displayed on their smartphones or printed out at home.
Barcode e-ticket sales have increased in the UK from 25 per cent of UK rail ticket revenues pre-COVID-19 to 33 per cent as people realise the benefits of non-contact travel. E-tickets can help passengers travel with confidence and are ideal for advanced singles, peak and off-peak singles and peak and off-peak day return tickets.
Another 18 Southern, Thameslink and Great Northern stations will follow across the Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) network over the coming months, in addition to the 42 stations already fitted with the technology.
Season ticket holders looking for similar COVID-safe benefits are urged to use the free Key smartcard, which is also now available over most ticket office counters and not just by ordering it online, a process that would otherwise take up to five days.
Southern‘s Managing Director, Angie Doll, said: “Customers who need to travel can already do so with confidence thanks to our intensive cleaning regime and long-lasting viruscide. Now, by rolling out e-tickets to even more stations in Sussex and Surrey, and making our free Key smartcard available over the counter, we’re making it even quicker and easier to book tickets online, speeding up our passengers’ journeys through the station, minimising contact and helping everyone to socially distance.”
Chris Heaton-Harris, the UK Rail Minister, said: “Making public transport more modern and accessible is a top priority in all the work that we do. The roll-out of smartphone ticketing across the Southern and Thameslink network makes it quicker and faster for passengers to pass through stations, simplifying their journeys and delivering a more seamless experience.”