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London leads the way on contactless travel


One billion journeys have now been made using contactless bank cards on London’s transport network according to latest figures, marking a significant shift in the way customers pay for their travel.

In total 40% of all pay-as-you-go journeys in the capital are now paid for using contactless – up from 25% in early 2016. This accounts for two million trips every day on average.

Of these, almost one in 10 contactless transactions are now made using mobile devices with more than 31 million journeys made specifically using mobile phones in London in the last 12 months.

“’Contactless payments have completely transformed the way people pay for travel in London,” said Transport for London’s chief technology officer Shashi Verma. “Our contactless technology is now making it easier for people to travel around the city, whether it’s for work, leisure or to visit friends and family.”

He added: “We’re committed to continue developing and expanding the system where we can to make it even more convenient for anyone visiting London.”

TfL’s contactless payment system was first launched on buses in 2012 and expanded to cover Tube and rail services in 2014. In the future contactless will also be expanded to cover the new Elizabeth line.

Last year TfL signed a deal worth up to £15M with ITS specialist Cubic Transportation Systems (CTS) allowing it to adapt London’s contactless ticketing system worldwide.

The capital’s mayor Sadiq Khan said: “London continues to lead the way in terms of contactless payment around the world, and the money we make selling TfL’s innovation and expertise to other major global cities will allow us to put further money into improving London’s own transport network.”

CTS executive vice president and managing director for Europe Roger Crow commented: “Our partnership with TfL has helped put London at centre stage among the world’s most technologically advanced payment systems.”

The company is currently progressing discussions with a number of world cities, including Sydney and Miami, to introduce contactless ticketing technology to their transport networks in the future.