Metro Transit is testing new fareboxes that should help speed up boardings, marking the first advancement in farebox technology in 25 years.
“It’s time. We’ve been using the same fareboxes since 1993,” said Dennis Dworshak, Manager, Revenue and Fare Collections. “This technology represents a new generation of fareboxes that will save riders and operators time during the boarding process.”
The new fareboxes allow customers to swipe transfer tickets like a credit card, instead of feeding them into a machine. While preventative maintenance has helped keep the older fareboxes running, jams can cause delays or even force a bus to be taken out of service.
The new fareboxes can also automatically scan and validate bills and feature a larger and brighter screen. Operators will have more ability to put the farebox controls in a position that is most comfortable to them, too.
The new fareboxes are expected to be installed across the fleet as funding allows. The new machines will also be included on all new buses. Tickets will be accepted by both farebox types during the transition.
A quarter of all bus customers purchase fares with cash and one-third of the time a local bus is in-service is dedicated to customer boardings.
The on-board Go-To Card validators were replaced in 2016 and have proven to be more reliable than the earlier technology they replaced.
Ultimately, the hope is that improved fare technology will make it easier for both customers and operators.
“We hope this new farebox will not only decrease the time spent boarding, but also increase the ability of the operator to focus on driving and building positive relationships with riders,” Dworshak said.
Customer feedback can be sent to Customer Relations.