07 Oct 2020

Simple, affordable ‘Tap & Cap’ payments come to buses in Bristol

Capped fares create savings for First Bus and metrobus passengers

‘Tap & Cap’ payments, provided by Littlepay and Ticketer, are being introduced across First West of England buses in Bristol from Sunday October 11. Passengers using First Bus and metrobus services in the Bristol Zone will be able to tap their contactless bank card or digital wallet on a Ticketer card reader as they board buses. Littlepay will process payments, applying fare caps, so that passengers automatically get the best value fare.

‘Tap & Cap’ removes the need for a paper ticket, so passengers don’t need to handle cash or queue to pay. The technology enables passengers to move quickly onboard, minimizing driver interaction and making it easier to socially distance. Passengers using this system in Bristol will be charged a single flat fare for each journey until they reach a daily fare cap, after which further travel is free. A weekly fare cap has also been configured to offer savings to frequent travellers, limiting their seven-day spend.

Using a First Bus online traveller portal provided by Littlepay, passengers will have a clear view of their travel history and what they have spent using ‘Tap & Cap’. First West of England will use Littlepay Control, Littlepay’s online merchant portal, to monitor transactions and sales performance and configure contactless fare structures and capping rules. The operator expects to see strong uptake of this payment option, mirroring the popularity of ‘Tap & Cap’ on First Bus services in other major UK cities.

James Freeman, Managing Director at First Bus West of England, said: “With ‘Tap & Cap’, we have reached an important milestone in our journey to make bus travel simpler for our customers in Bristol. This system has already been launched in Aberdeen, Doncaster and Southampton where it has proven extremely popular.”

Amin Shayan, CEO of Littlepay, said: “It’s great to work with First Bus to deliver fare capping in another UK city. ‘Tap & Cap’ not only provides a fast, frictionless payment experience, it also reassures passengers that using public transport can be seamless, safe and affordable.”

John Clarfelt, CEO at Ticketer, adds: “We are immensely proud of our partnership with First Bus. We believe expanding payment options with ‘Tap and Cap’ is fundamental to making bus travel more accessible and convenient for passengers, whilst also building confidence that buses are a safe way to travel. Operators further benefit from a new wealth of journey pattern data to run more efficiently, maximize the use of their vehicles, and reduced boarding times.”