The attainment of seamless multimodal door-to-door mobility has emerged as a clear priority on the EU policy agenda. Having declared 2018 as the ‘Year of Multimodality’, the European Commission has over the past year put together a number of legislative and policy initiatives relating to better infrastructure, connections, incentives and digital solutions, with a view to promoting the shift towards a fully integrated, multimodal and sustainable transport sector.
Achieving this goal will largely depend on creating favourable conditions for transport users, which among other things includes the creation of ‘multimodal ticketing and payment systems’. In practical terms, this means that the purchase of tickets in one go would enable passengers to travel using different transport modes provided by numerous operators. As implied by this definition, an integrated ticketing system relies on the close collaboration of multiple players on the execution of a number of steps throughout the whole lifecycle of the value chain.
An overarching EU framework may be needed for multimodal transport especially in cross-border contexts. Indeed, different approaches to ticketing and payment systems have been observed to date across the different EU Member States, and in some instances even across different regions of the same country.
Access to fare data, in particular, is one important pre-condition to enabling multimodal EU-wide ticketing and payment systems. At present, however, there is no common EU rules on access to fare data (beyond the Delegated Regulation 1926/2017 on EU multimodal travel information services), which increases the complexity and poses a hurdle for the development of multimodal EU ticketing and payment systems. In addition, the absence of common rules and standard, data are collected and made available in different formats only based on common standards developed by the parties of the commercial agreement.
The development of a common EU-wide definition for multimodal ticketing and payment systems will be an important, yet challenging, task ahead of EU policy makers in ensuring streamlined national approaches and safeguarding the possibility for Europeans across the continent to enjoy EU-wide door-to-door mobility.
This forum gathers European- and national-regulators, public transport operators, industry representatives, and academics for a discussion on the challenges and enablers to delivering an EU wide multimodal ticketing and payment system. The event will take stock of existing EU-legislation and will go on to examine possible EU actions and initiatives that could be undertaken in view of achieving it. More specifically, forum participants will consider the following critical questions:
1) How can access to fare data be enabled?
2) What lessons can be drawn from the air ticket distribution market?
3) What are the possible EU actions and initiatives, both legislative and non-legislative, which could be undertaken in view of achieving an EU-wide multimodal ticketing and payment system?