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PAYG with Mobile now More Popular Than Before Pandemic

3 min

Image Credit: Markus Freise, Unsplash
Figures by Transport for London (TfL) have revealed that more than a third of all adult contactless pay as you go (PAYG) journeys on the Tube are now made using a mobile device. Quadrant Transport looks at how travelling in London is being made more convenient and easier.

Through TfL’s new analysis, it has been highlighted that more people are using PAYG contactless via a mobile phone or smartwatch to travel on the London Underground than they were prior to the pandemic.

The new figures show that in a four-week period from the end of July to late August 2022, around 485,000 journeys a day were being made on the Tube using a mobile device. This equates to around 35 per cent of all Tube adult PAYG journeys made using contactless or around 25 per cent of all adult PAYG journeys.

PAYG Means More Convenient Transport For The Travelling Public

Prior to the pandemic, around the end of January 2020, there were around 400,000 contactless journeys a day being made using a mobile phone o a smartwatch. This was just 26 per cent of all PAYG with contactless journeys and around 16 per cent of all adult PAYG Tube journeys.

Transport for London has said that using PAYG with mobile means more convenient and easier transport. Head of Customer Payments at TfL, Andrew Anderson said: “We are committed to making travel in London as easy as possible.”

Millions of journeys in and around London are now made using contactless every day – with close to half a million now made using mobile devices rather than a bank card.

Using PAYG with contactless means that customers can simply touch in and out at stations, avoiding queueing at ticket machines or needing to top-up their Oyster card.

Automatically, the card can calculate the best value fare based on the customer’s specific daily journey history and charges them at the end of the day, ensuring that they always pay the lowest fare in the easiest and most convenient way.

The Benefits Of Smart Ticketing Will Be Promoted

In recent years, the popularity of PAYG with contactless has grown, particularly with the travelling public using mobile devices as more people adopt the latest smartphone technology.

Across London, TfL has said that contactless journeys now make up around 71 per cent of all PAYG journeys on buses, Tube, and rail services in and around London, up from around 31 per cent in 2016.

To encourage the travelling public to avoid queuing and to make the transition from paper tickets to more convenient smarter ticketing, Google Pay has recently begun a six-month campaign across five of London’s most high-profile Tube stations.

Within these stations, people will see signage prompting them to add a debit or credit card to Google Wallet. Once a card is added to the app, customers can skip the queue for ticket machines and pay contactless with Google Pay.

Andrew Anderson added: “Working with Google Pay, we are helping promote the benefits of smart ticketing over queuing to purchase traditional paper tickets, making travel more convenient and accessible for all.”