Parkeon has completed the roll-out of ITSO enabled smart ticketing technology across the entire Arriva UK fleet of 4,000 buses – a key milestone for the bus operator as it looks to introduce ever-more innovative payment and information systems.

Arriva’s investment in the Wayfarer200 platform – and its own HOPS back office system – has positioned the company strongly not just in supporting ITSO schemes around the country but in meeting the aspirations of ‘generation-m’, for whom mobile ticketing is increasingly the default mode of payment.

Engineers at Parkeon have ensured that the Wayfarer200 system is future-proofed to process NFC communication and EMV payments – and with almost 10 million m-ticket journeys undertaken by Arriva customers so far, consumer acceptance of mobile payment is growing rapidly.

“This is a fast-moving industry and our investment in Parkeon technology is a key element in underpinning some of the innovative m-ticketing products and information systems we will be unveiling in the near future,” says Mike Woodhouse, Marketing Manager at Arriva UK Bus.

“m-commerce will continue to grow in importance for bus operators in the years ahead as customers see the benefit of contactless technology that is safe, secure and easy to use.”

Arriva is strongly positioned to offer customers exactly what they require in terms of payment options – from mobile phones and EMV cards to smartcards and cash.

Among the most recent innovations is the development with Parkeon of a low-cost smartcard system covering universities and colleges in north-west England and Wales. The Arriva system uses Parkeon smartcard technology but with a chip and antenna embedded in a tag adhered to student passes.

The Wayfarer200 platform processes the transaction is the usual way but the data collected enables Arriva to gain better visibility of patronage and usage while enabling hot-listing to combat any attempt at fraudulent behaviour.

“Locally, this means that we can gain exact data linked to student usage and travel patterns, which not only helps with route planning but is also informing our discussions around introducing travel passes linked to the academic year,” says Mike Woodhouse.

Using the same Parkeon smartcard technology, the Arriva Connect smartcard has just been launched on the new Luton & Dunstable Busway, with cards being given out to local residents as part of an initiative to encourage more people to try public transport.

Gavin Trimnell, Parkeon Head of UK Sales, commented: “Arriva is at the forefront of Britain’s smart ticketing revolution – and Parkeon is playing its part not just in rolling out ITSO schemes around the country but in enabling the vision of m-ticketing to fast become a reality.”

The Wayfarer200 platform is the fourth generation of Parkeon technology adopted by Arriva since the early 1980s.