Solent Future Transport Zone becomes the first to offer rail ticketing 

This is thanks to its partnership with Unicard LTD, an established provider of smart ticketing and payment solutions to the public and commercial transport sector. Unicard’s Rail Suite platform, designed to support rail accreditation, has enabled Solent Transport to sell rail tickets through its Breeze travel app.

In 2021, in line with its Future Transport Zone (FTZ) programme, Solent Transport appointed Unicard as part of a consortium to develop a MaaS powered app that would make travel in the region easier and more accessible. Powered by Trafi, Solent Transport’s Breeze app features a smart ticketing and payment solution provided by Unicard and ensures seamless travel across all forms of transport in the region.

With the additional capabilities provided by Unicard’s Rail Suite platform, Solent Transport can retail rail tickets through the Breeze app. Unicard’s Rail Suite effectively manages the complex data integrations and certifications required for the app to interface with the back-office systems of the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), the body responsible for selling and issuing tickets for travel. In addition, Unicard provides the support necessary to ensure Solent Transport meets all the standards required for accreditation by RDG to sell rail tickets including customer care, aftersales and financial reconciliation.

Sean Dickinson, CEO of Unicard, explains: “The addition of rail accreditation to the Breeze app marks a significant milestone in our long-standing relationship with Solent Transport. Unicard works with local authorities throughout the UK to deliver smart ticketing solutions that meet with their changing transport requirements. On this occasion we were able to draw on our considerable experience and expertise in the rail sector”.

He added: “Rail accreditation is yet another component that local authorities can add to their transport offerings. It’s in line with the UK Government’s Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail that encourages transport authorities to sell rail tickets directly in their respective regions. Our rail products are designed to remove the barriers to entry for local authorities looking to offer those types of services. We’re able to speed up the process so that new rail accreditation services can be rolled out much faster”.

Conrad Haigh, Solent Transport Manager, adds: “Solent is one of the UK’s designated FTZs. We have plans to transform access to public transport services in the region with the help of our new Breeze app, developed as a central part of FTZ programme”.

“We are now taking that vision a step further having achieved rail accreditation as an agent. Solent Transport is proud to deliver rail ticketing for a UK MaaS product, there is still more to come with new products been introduced to the app regularly, as we look to  support customers in accessing all forms of transport and travel within our region. Unicard has played a key role in helping us to provide ticketing services that meet the needs of transport providers across the region”, he added.