Leeds' first "Oyster card" system is to be introduced: What it is and how it will work

Last week it was announced that a new "Oyster card" style bus payment method is set to be introduced within West Yorkshire but how exactly will it work?

By Alex Grant
Tuesday, 7th December 2021, 5:08 pm

Here's everything you need to know.

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"Oyster card" style bus payment to finally arrive in Leeds this Christmas as par...

What is an Oyster card?

The tap on tap off contactless system will guarantee customers ultimate flexibility on the fare paid.

The Oyster card is a London based public transport payment method designed to allow for a smoother contactless form of payment.

The tap on tap off system was designed to reduce the number of transactions at ticket offices and the number of paper tickets, with usage encouraged by offering substantially cheaper fares than with cash.

How will it work in West Yorkshire?

West Yorkshire's soon to be introduced version will offer very similar traits to its London counter-part.

The tap on tap off (TOTO) contactless system will guarantee customers ultimate flexibility on the fare paid. It charges for a single journey and customers who make several bus trips each day on First West Yorkshire services will pay a maximum £5.20 on the first day.

This maximum will then continue to reduce the more they travel during a week.

To use TOTO a person uses their contactless card or mobile at the ticket machine next to the driver but must ‘tap’ again on the new special card reader device when leaving the bus.

When is it being introduced?

The system is set to come into affect from next Monday (December 13), meaning it will be in place just in time for the last minute Christmas shopping rush.

It will be introduced to First Bus services across Leeds and West Yorkshire.

What happens if I forget to tap off?

Any passenger that forgets to tap off again upon exiting the bus will be charged the standard fee for the whole route.

What other changes are being introduced?

Included alongside the TOTO system will be a:

Discounted return with prices starting at £2.50 for customers who make a simple journey to a destination and back.

Reduced single ticket, beginning at £1.40. The maximum price for the longest journeys will be £2.90, a reduction of 17 per cent on the existing fare.

Flexi tickets with three-day and five-day options for people to plan their travel Monday-Friday or over a full week and a 13-day ticket allowing trips to be spread over a month.

Fares structure redesigned with tickets becoming consistent across West Yorkshire, enabling travel anywhere in the region with the same ticket.

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