Tap & cap system for public transport described as a ‘win-win’

Research conducted by two local students for Midlands Connect shows that bringing in a London Oyster style ‘tap and cap’ system would provide savings for young people in the Black Country as well as a massive boost for bus and tram operators.

The two students, Charlie Goddard of Stourbridge and Samuel Islam of Great Barr have worked out that young people in the Black Country, travelling to Birmingham could make big savings from a ‘tap and cap’ system.

The research has been dubbed as a ‘win-win’ and highlighting that the scheme could ‘save young people throughout the Midlands millions of pounds every year’.

The research conducted by them for Sub-national Transport Body Midlands Connect has shown that:

  • For a student studying at Birmingham City University or Aston University, commuting from areas surrounding Stourbridge, they would save £56.13 a year due to smart ticketing.
  • To travel from Dudley bus station to Colmore Row would save someone £39.69
  • And someone travelling from West Bromwich to Birmingham would save £31.35

The research shows that if the system proposed by Midlands Connect, Transport for the West Midlands and Nottingham City Council is introduced, the annual revenue of bus and tram operators would increase by £39.65m, a 7.5% increase. This is due to an increase of usage of 5% for tram journeys and an increase of 10% for bus journeys.

This saving would make a big difference to people. Figures also show that the average weekly household expenditure in the West Midlands spent on transport is 14%, the second highest category after housing, fuel and power (15%).

Midlands Connect is working on a business case to roll out a tap and cap system for payment throughout the country using a unique back office solution. Charlie said:

“This research shows that bringing in a tap and cap system in the Midlands will benefit passengers and bus and tram operators. It is the definition of a win-win idea.

“Our research shows that it will move people from their car to public transport which will benefit our environment and our health.

“I hope our research will now be fed into the proposal for a national solution created in the Midlands.”


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