Just the ticket! Bus users in Leeds on board with new payment system


Bus users in Leeds have given the thumbs-up to a new ticket payment system designed to deliver faster journeys at the tap of a card.

First West Yorkshire introduced the contactless technology on its buses yesterday in a bid to reduce boarding times.

Key points to remember for people wanting to take advantage of the system include:

* Contactless purchases are made by presenting a payment card or mobile when getting on the bus;

* Visa, Mastercard or Maestro cards with a contactless logo can be used, as can Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay for mobiles;

* Once a transaction has gone through, then the passenger gets their ticket and a receipt from the driver;

* A national limit set by banking bosses means contactless can only be used for purchases up to £30.

Passengers praising the new system on social media included Stuart Fillingham, who tweeted: “Making good pace on the @FirstWestYorks X6 to Bradford. Fast, warm, free WiFi, USB charging and now contactless payments.”

Another passenger, Nathan Shipley, tweeted: “I‘ve just made a contactless payment for my bus ticket. It was a first for me and the driver. It’s the future!”

First West Yorkshire commercial director Martin Hirst told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “The introduction of contactless payments across our entire West Yorkshire fleet means that customers can now switch from paying with cash to using their card or mobile and it’s pleasing to see that customers have already started to make the switch away from cash.

“Customers who switch from using cash to contactless will really help us in our aim to speed up bus boarding times and so I’d encourage anyone who has not trialled our new contactless payment option yet to give it a go as soon as possible.

“Our customers have been sharing feedback via Twitter and directly to our drivers, but we’re anticipating an increase in contactless payments from this Monday, as regular customers will switch from purchasing their weekly tickets with cash, to contactless.”

For further information about the new payment system, visit www.firstgroup.com/leeds.

Mobile ticketing, where passengers purchase a ticket in advance via an online app, has been offered by First since 2014.