Real-Time Passenger Information (RTPI) - Articles and news items
In our latest free-to-view RTPI & Ticketing supplement, Briony Krikorian (UK Cards Association), Dave Walker (GTR) and Stefanos Gogos (UNIFE) explore the future of contactless ticketing for the rail industry and transforming real-time passenger information with a look at the IT2Rail project…
Rail industry news / 11 May 2016 /
Passengers can now benefit from up-to-date journey information facilities providing real time information at stations across Greater Manchester.
Rail industry news / 6 May 2016 /
Thameslink stations in central London are to receive new information screens with ‘at-a-glance’ journey details in preparation for new generation trains and a future high intensity service.
Rail industry news / 23 March 2016 /
Virgin Trains have introduced a new text messaging service that offers personalised, customer boarding information at London Euston station.
Issue 6 2014 / 3 December 2014 /
Keeping people informed is one of the simplest ways to reduce complaints, increase satisfaction and gain a reputation for good customer service, writes David Whitley – Head of Regional Services at London Midland. It’s all part of thinking like a passenger, and arguably more important than operational performance itself: a quick scan through the National Rail Passenger Survey reveals that Britain’s least punctual train operator has a higher customer satisfaction rating than Britain’s most punctual! The same survey points out that handling delays well is the single biggest way to reduce customer dissatisfaction. In fact, it has three times the impact of punctuality itself…
Past events / 21 November 2014 /
Real-Time Passenger Information 2014 will bring together all stakeholders to debate best practice in Real-Time Passenger Information strategy…
23 November 2016, London
Our next Real-Time Passenger Information (RTPI) conference will bring together Local Authorities, Passenger Transport Executives, Transport Operators, RTPI consultants and systems suppliers to discuss and debate world class best practice in Real-Time Passenger Information strategy and implementation…
Infrabel: accurate and innovative travel information (Ann Billiau, Director-General for Rail Access, Infrabel)
Real-time Passenger Information – a fundamental requirement (Fiona Dolman, Director of Operational Services, Network Rail)
Social media: help us to get home (Guy Dangerfield, Rail Passenger Manager, Passenger Focus)
Issue 1 2013 / 20 February 2013 /
British transport company Go-Ahead is one of the country’s major transport groups. Its bus and rail companies serve over one billion passengers a year, or 2.7 million people a day. The Group has 23,000 staff working across its operations which stretch from Plymouth in the south west to Newcastle in the north east. In an interview for European Railway Review, Go-Ahead’s Managing Director – Rail Development, Alex Hynes, explains the importance of providing accurate and efficient Real-Time Passenger Information systems and processes.
Go-Ahead runs three rail franchises through Govia, the joint venture partnership between Go-Ahead and Keolis. Between them, the three businesses – Southern, which includes Gatwick Express, Southeastern and London Midland – are responsible for 30% of rail passenger journeys and carry more commuters than anyone else.
“We are the busiest operator in the UK and one of the busiest in Europe,” said Alex. “We run 5,000 services a day, so keeping people informed about what’s happening on our networks is a vital part of our offer to passengers. It’s also crucial that we have systems and processes in place which enable us to update our passengers during times of disruption. To achieve this we have to keep abreast of changing passenger requirements and the latest tech – nological developments.”
The way in which information is provided to passengers has changed significantly in recent years. Ten years ago, customers relied on paper timetables and service update boards at stations. There was little or no on-train communications and public address systems were scarce. Passengers used the telephone to contact call centres for information about their service.
Since then, the information landscape has altered dramatically. Passengers can access realtime online journey planners and stations have digital screens with live updates. National Rail Enquiries (NRES) can be contacted via telephone and the web, and handheld devices give passengers instant access to live departure boards. Stations and trains now provide auto – matic announcements to keep people informed. Operators have also focused on giving staff the right tools to do the job – equipping them, for example, with Blackberry handsets through which they can also access information to pass on to passengers.
These developments provide a solid base for operators and make it easier to communicate when things are going well. But the statistics speak for themselves – while overall customer satisfaction has steadily risen over the past 10 years (from 73% to 84%) dealing with delays remains a challenge: Passengers score operators in London and the South East fairly low on that count – the Spring 2012 National Passenger Survey revealed a satisfaction score of only 35%.
However, the industry has responded to the challenge. In November 2009, a new code of practice was issued aimed at setting out best practice in delivering Passenger Information During Disruption (PIDD).
The severe weather in December 2010 badly disrupted some rail services and as a result the Office of Rail Regulation proposed new powers to ensure improvements to passenger information. Those new obligations came into force in autumn 2011.They aim to help train operators deliver a co-ordinated approach to the provision of passenger information during major delays and disruption in an appropriate and consistent manner.