Transit Mobile Payments: Driving Consumer Experience and Adoption
Over 7.3 million people use public transportation to commute to and from work every day in the United States. Many commuters travel with their smartphones in hand to check the day's news, send emails, update social network status, watch movies, and shop. Increasingly, commuters are seeing the value in using their mobile phones to pay for transit fare (where available) to avoid waiting in ticket lines or having to carry cash or a fare card. Being able to seamlessly connect all parts of their journey via mobile — including trip planning, paying for fares, parking, and admission passes to local attractions, and receiving promotional offers for nearby retailers - could enhance that value.
The author conducted interviews with 16 executives representing transit agencies, transport system integrators and companies that provide digital security solutions, mobile ticketing platforms, and mobile marketing solutions, and conducted secondary industry research. The purpose of the research was to assess whether transit mobile payments can help drive adoption of mobile payments in the US by considering the following:
- Consumer interest in transit mobile payments and other drivers, such as broader smartphone adoption and availability of near field communication (NFC) phones.
- How transit agencies are leveraging mobile technologies in their payment strategies to create more opportunities to pay for fares via mobile.
- How use of mobile for transit payments can encourage customers to use mobile in other retail venues.