Jesmond residents receptive to contactless Metro payment

A survey by Newcastle University’s OpenLab team shows that a significant number of Jesmond residents are keen to see a smarter ticketing system on the Metro and on local bus services.

44% of those surveyed said they would likely switch from driving their own car to the Metro or local bus services if a smarter system was implemented.

The system proposed by OpenLab in their survey involves using contactless debit cards to tap in and out, similar to how payment is taken on the London Underground network.

Currently, contactless payment is only available as a way of paying for a paper ticket, which sometimes leads to problems for Metro users.

Regular commuter Gabrielle Swailes, 22, told JesmondLocal she was in favour of contactless payment. “I would love it,” she said. “I sometimes miss the Metro because I’m faffing on with the machine”.

Contactless tap-in, tap-out payment could be a way of mitigating problems caused by faulty ticket machines.  JesmondLocal reported in October that this was a recurring problem.

Some commuters were not so taken with the idea. George Issa, 21, shared concerns about pricing, stating that “prices change all the time – I wouldn’t want to tap in and out and later realise they’ve raised the fare again”.

A Nexus spokesperson told JesmondLocal the existing Pop Pay As You Go Card can be used to pay for travel on Arriva, Go North East and Stagecoach bus services across the North East. The spokesperson also highlighted how London’s regulated transport model – where a local government body oversees transport – makes contactless payment a lot easier to implement in the capital.

JesmondLocal went to West Jesmond station to gauge public reaction to the survey’s findings. You can listen to our report below: