Preferred ticket format poll (paper ticket vs smartphone app etc.)

Which ticket format is the one you prefer to use while travelling?

  • Paper ticket from booking office/ticket machine

  • Paper ticket printed on A4 at home

  • Phone app

  • Smartcard, e.g. "The Key" or similar (like Transport for London Oyster card)


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507020

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They are eTickets.
So what are m-tickets?
What do you mean by 'not machine readable'? The aztec code on a paper roll ticket can be scanned (and shows all the information you'd expect to see)
I’m sure the bog roll ones I’ve seen haven’t had barcodes.
If you like collecting tickets, an e-ticket should be your favourite, as you can keep them for life in the same quality as when you got it. Unlike thermal print tickets which eventually fade. Dot matrix tickets seem to last longer though and I've still got plenty of those in virtually original quality.
I do, but I find anything other than the CCST tickets aren’t really a collection.
However very aware CCST is old technology and barrier systems have to run ticket through machinery as well as read the magnetic strip. Also ticket printing also has to write the magnetic strip. Hence overall expensive.

Aztec code e-ticket however presented is just an electronic reader. For e-tickets tickets bought away from a station printing is an option if at home and have a printer or are somewhere with access to a printer.
Why were they introduced in the first place if the technology was so much more expensive than the Edmondson tickets which had been in use for the previous 140 years? Using an optical scanner to scan a code would allow a ticket to be either printed or displayed on a screen without paying to write to the magnetic strip, but the loss of the familiar ticket format is an issue for some passengers.
I am in a minority, certainly on this forum, but do not want to be using smartphone at the barrier. To have the ticket accessible on the phone without needing internet e.g. copy to folder and load on PDF reader is added hassle. I do not want to rely on public wi-fi putting aside registering to get connected at different stations, as a minimum need to register gor each station operator.
Tickets already added to the Apple Wallet can be viewed without internet access or opening an app (although you must still have battery power but contactless payments through Apple Pay can also be done without Internet and on TfL only can still be done with a completely dead battery) and it takes me less than a second to open the Apple Wallet after taking my phone out of my pocket because I have it set up to open when pressing the home button twice (it is the power button on newer models) I very rarely find myself using WiFi since I have had unlimited data for the past few years.
 
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yorkie

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So what are m-tickets?
Tickets that can only be shown in an app, must be activated and are tied to a specific device

See: https://www.google.com/search?q=mtickets+v+e+tickets+site:railforums.co.uk
I’m sure the bog roll ones I’ve seen haven’t had barcodes.
Newer till roll style tickets do. Where did you purchase yours?
Why were they introduced in the first place if the technology was so much more expensive than the Edmondson tickets which had been in use for the previous 140 years?
I think that's a question for the history and nostalgia section!
Using an optical scanner to scan a code would allow a ticket to be either printed or displayed on a screen without paying to write to the magnetic strip, but the loss of the familiar ticket format is an issue for some passengers.
Agreed, some. It is very much a minority overall.
 

lachlan

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Don't really mind what type I use. I've both left a whole trip's worth of paper tickets at home before (resulting in a delayed departure and having to pay for a later ticket) and had my phone break in the middle of a trip (luckily I had my iPad with meand could access the electronic tickets on that).

I think my answer for preference would be paper tickets when there's a ticket machine or office I can buy them from on the day, and electronic tickets when it's a pre-booked trip.
 

Spamcan81

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CCST is my preference and preferably bought at a ticket office window as I prefer dealing with human beings rather than a machine. No system is foolproof though. Paper tickets can be lost, electronic devices can fail or be left somewhere - happened to me but thankfully not with a ticket stored on it at the time.
 

Bletchleyite

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Paper tickets can be lost, electronic devices can fail or be left somewhere - happened to me but thankfully not with a ticket stored on it at the time.

Overall I'm much less likely to lose a chunky phone than a flimsy little credit card sized piece of card. Some people are very careless with phones but it does surprise me given that they are worth £500+. They really are not easy to lose if you take a tiny amount of care.

Talking of phones, to the person who thinks they'd break it through it being in their trouser pocket, this is tripe. I have owned a mobile phone since 1998 and my right trouser pocket has been where it has always resided. The only time I've ever damaged one badly (i.e. properly cracked the glass) is by dropping it onto uneven concrete from about 5' in the air. (A decent case would have protected if the concrete had been flat). The screens are very, very strong.
 

LethalDrizzle

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Some sort of smartphone based ticket works nicely for me, but good 'ol card-thing-bought-at-the-station is just fine.

Print at home tickets are the devil's own work, and smartcard type things feel a couple of decades out of date.
 

Haywain

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Overall I'm much less likely to lose a chunky phone than a flimsy little credit card sized piece of card. Some people are very careless with phones but it does surprise me given that they are worth £500+. They really are not easy to lose if you take a tiny amount of care.

Talking of phones, to the person who thinks they'd break it through it being in their trouser pocket, this is tripe. I have owned a mobile phone since 1998 and my right trouser pocket has been where it has always resided. The only time I've ever damaged one badly (i.e. properly cracked the glass) is by dropping it onto uneven concrete from about 5' in the air. (A decent case would have protected if the concrete had been flat). The screens are very, very strong.
I fell over (completely sober) on a wet day on the shiny floor on the bridge at Coventry station, landing on my left hip and completely destroying the phone in my left hand trouser pocket! It's the only time I've managed to break a phone. I wouldn't let that put me off using eTickets though.

As an aside, I should probably have taken issue with the station operator about the state of the floor.
 

miklcct

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Talking of phones, to the person who thinks they'd break it through it being in their trouser pocket, this is tripe. I have owned a mobile phone since 1998 and my right trouser pocket has been where it has always resided. The only time I've ever damaged one badly (i.e. properly cracked the glass) is by dropping it onto uneven concrete from about 5' in the air. (A decent case would have protected if the concrete had been flat). The screens are very, very strong.
In my last few years I have broken at least 2 phones forgetting to close the zipper of my trouser pocket as my phone fell out when I was chasing for a bus (an short-haul express bus route which acts as a feeder service to the railway, with only one single vehicle operating the whole route running every 30 minutes where I needed to take it for 1 stop, which took 1 minute to travel 1 km to get home).

Also I have lost a phone on a taxi as I needed to find cash to pay for taxi fare (with my wallet usually placed in an inconvenient location, not expecting to use it) and misplaced it. I discovered it missing literally minutes later and dialled the number, but it had been shut down already and was never found. Previously I also had a phone left at a restaurant and I dialled it afterwards, and I retrieved it back after a few hours just before the restaurant closed.
 

cuccir

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My personal heirarchy would be

Satisfactory
1. Credit Card
2. e-Ticket (pdf)
3. Smartcards

Rubbish
3. 'Bog roll'
4. m-Ticket

I do like the credit-card style ones, but a pdf is pretty good too. I've had my mind changed on that one as I was previously quite sceptical about them. Smartcards with automatic top-up perhaps remain the best for regular low-value tickets in urban areas, but that's not me.

The bog roll ones are useless as they can't manually open a ticket barrier and are worse for scanning than a pdf, and can't as easily be stored in a wallet without damage. M-tickets are obviously crap.

My preferred way of buying is either online (web or app) or via a ticket machine.
 

Davester50

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My personal heirarchy would be

Satisfactory
1. Credit Card
2. e-Ticket (pdf)
3. Smartcards

Rubbish
3. 'Bog roll'
4. m-Ticket

I do like the credit-card style ones, but a pdf is pretty good too. I've had my mind changed on that one as I was previously quite sceptical about them. Smartcards with automatic top-up perhaps remain the best for regular low-value tickets in urban areas, but that's not me.

The bog roll ones are useless as they can't manually open a ticket barrier and are worse for scanning than a pdf, and can't as easily be stored in a wallet without damage. M-tickets are obviously crap.

My preferred way of buying is either online (web or app) or via a ticket machine.
I'm the same, I do prefer a physical ticket, and the credit card sized ticket is perfect, in my opinion.
I do like Apple Wallet boarding pass tickets, and Oyster in London.

I was given a till roll thing recently. Horrible.
 

CaptainHaddock

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Of course the results of this poll will be slightly skewed by the fact it's taking place online and you have to have some degree of tech knowledge to log on and vote. If you held a similar poll on the high street the majority in favour of paper tickets over e-tickets would be even larger!
 

Bletchleyite

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Of course the results of this poll will be slightly skewed by the fact it's taking place online and you have to have some degree of tech knowledge to log on and vote. If you held a similar poll on the high street the majority in favour of paper tickets over e-tickets would be even larger!

It's easy to carry out a poll by sitting on a train and watching a ticket inspection. In my observation it's now well over 90% e-ticket, sometimes even 100%.

This Forum has a disproportionately large level of what you might term Luddism over a lot of things, not just this. Or perhaps more conservatism (small C), i.e. don't change anything.
 

Haywain

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If you held a similar poll on the high street the majority in favour of paper tickets over e-tickets would be even larger!
If you held a poll on the high street the majority would be saying that they don't care because they don't use trains. But I would not expect the same results as you.
 

Bletchleyite

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If you held a poll on the high street the majority would be saying that they don't care because they don't use trains. But I would not expect the same results as you.

I think if you went somewhere where the majority do use trains, e.g. parts of Liverpool near Merseyrail stations, then you'd get an overwhelming "we want to be able to buy a ticket on our phones".
 

Xenophon PCDGS

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This Forum has a disproportionately large level of what you might term Luddism over a lot of things, not just this. Or perhaps more conservatism (small C), i.e. don't change anything.
Having been recently monitoring certain fraud scam methodology used by the global criminal fraternity, the deliberate belittling of people who do not subscribe to modern technology that the scammers really need to carry out their crime is one of the warnings that people should be made aware of.
 

Bletchleyite

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Having been recently monitoring certain fraud scam methodology used by the global criminal fraternity, the deliberate belittling of people who do not subscribe to modern technology that the scammers really need to carry out their crime is one of the warnings that people should be made aware of.

Not universally true. For instance, a physical debit or credit card can be "skimmed", or contactless payments can be made if it is stolen. Neither of those things is true of contactless payment carried out via Apple/Google Pay unless the thief also knows your phone PIN.

If you use technology sensibly and responsibly, odds on it won't happen to you.
 

lachlan

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Never seen a "till roll" ticket before but if its anything like bus tickets it sounds bad as the ink wears off and they get crumped easily.

As for the poll I wouldn't read too much into it, as I said earlier I don't really have a preference but voted paper ticket primarily to see the results.
 

Bletchleyite

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Never seen a "till roll" ticket before but if its anything like bus tickets it sounds bad as the ink wears off and they get crumped easily.

As for the poll I wouldn't read too much into it, as I said earlier I don't really have a preference but voted paper ticket primarily to see the results.

Train tickets aren't issued on actual till roll, they'll be referring to "bog roll" or PRT (paper roll ticket) which is thermally printed like bus tickets but is considerably more robust and doesn't fade.

Most till roll doesn't fade either, I've got a huge box of receipts that I can never be bothered to throw out, and they're all still readable; by design they need to last at least 12 months in case you need to take something back. I always thought it was a deliberate security feature that bus tickets faded.

I can see the railway printing on actual till roll in future, though - cheap, and you don't need other security features if there's an e-ticket barcode, as that is itself the security feature.
 

lachlan

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Train tickets aren't issued on actual till roll, they'll be referring to "bog roll" or PRT (paper roll ticket) which is thermally printed like bus tickets but is considerably more robust and doesn't fade.

Most till roll doesn't fade either, I've got a huge box of receipts that I can never be bothered to throw out, and they're all still readable; by design they need to last at least 12 months in case you need to take something back. I always thought it was a deliberate security feature that bus tickets faded.

I can see the railway printing on actual till roll in future, though - cheap, and you don't need other security features if there's an e-ticket barcode, as that is itself the security feature.
In my experience till roll is pretty resilient (unless it gets caught under the heat lamps on the pass and turns completely black, haha). Come to think of it yes, bus tickets seem to fade a lot easier than till recipts.
 

Xenophon PCDGS

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Not universally true. For instance, a physical debit or credit card can be "skimmed", or contactless payments can be made if it is stolen. Neither of those things is true of contactless payment carried out via Apple/Google Pay unless the thief also knows your phone PIN.

If you use technology sensibly and responsibly, odds on it won't happen to you.
I wish that you could have listened to the Sliced.Bread Radio 4 programme this morning that involved a total figure of £675,000 scammed from a couple in North Yorkshire from two banks over a longish period of time where the monies were all refunded by the banks, as the banks have a duty of care to their customer and despite regular withdrawals of large sums of money that bore no relation to the previous year's banking history, not once did the banks contact their customer. The scammer was supposedly a senior Fraud Squad officer carrying out a major investigation.
 

Bletchleyite

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I wish that you could have listened to the Sliced.Bread Radio 4 programme this morning that involved a total figure of £675,000 scammed from a couple in North Yorkshire from two banks over a longish period of time where the monies were all refunded by the banks, as the banks have a duty of care to their customer and despite regular withdrawals of large sums of money that bore no relation to the previous year's banking history, not once did the banks contact their customer. The scammer was supposedly a senior Fraud Squad officer carrying out a major investigation.

I could listen to it, in fact, using some technology on a mobile phone - the BBC Sounds app. I might do so shortly.
 

david1212

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......
Tickets already added to the Apple Wallet can be viewed without internet access or opening an app (although you must still have battery power but contactless payments through Apple Pay can also be done without Internet and on TfL only can still be done with a completely dead battery) and it takes me less than a second to open the Apple Wallet after taking my phone out of my pocket because I have it set up to open when pressing the home button twice (it is the power button on newer models)

But this only works if using Apple Pay, Google Pay and similar.

I very rarely find myself using WiFi since I have had unlimited data for the past few years.

Fine if you get value for money from your contract.
If SIM only at £5 a month, and probably more to get even 5GB data, for a year £60 I can spend on something else e.g. rail tickets for a couple of days out.
The PAYG SIM in my smartphone started ~18 months ago with £10 credit still has about £9.70.
Similarly my basic pocket / belt phone.

Talking of phones, to the person who thinks they'd break it through it being in their trouser pocket, this is tripe. I have owned a mobile phone since 1998 and my right trouser pocket has been where it has always resided. The only time I've ever damaged one badly (i.e. properly cracked the glass) is by dropping it onto uneven concrete from about 5' in the air. (A decent case would have protected if the concrete had been flat). The screens are very, very strong.

Regardless of durability I do not want a smartphone in my trouser pocket nor lightweight jacket fleece. Heavyweight jacket or coat pocket OK when cold enough to need one.

If only out for a walk from home or parked car so no bag I just clip a basic small & lightweight phone to belt or belt ring on trousers.
 

Bletchleyite

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Regardless of durability I do not want a smartphone in my trouser pocket nor lightweight jacket fleece.

Whyever not? I think you'll find that well over 50% of the population have one in exactly that location (mine's there right now), and of the ones that don't it'll simply because they have no trouser pockets e.g. are wearing a skirt.

Some of the arguments about this really are beyond bizarre.
 

Dai Corner

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I wish that you could have listened to the Sliced.Bread Radio 4 programme this morning that involved a total figure of £675,000 scammed from a couple in North Yorkshire from two banks over a longish period of time where the monies were all refunded by the banks, as the banks have a duty of care to their customer and despite regular withdrawals of large sums of money that bore no relation to the previous year's banking history, not once did the banks contact their customer. The scammer was supposedly a senior Fraud Squad officer carrying out a major investigation.
Do you mean 'You and Yours' this afternoon?

Like almost all BBC programmes it's available to listen to when you are ready. No need to make an appointment with a radio transmitter.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m00174dd
 

blakey1152

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For me the winner has to be the CCST, I can easily put them in my wallet for safe keeping and I have a physical ticket to hand when required.
E-tickets bring fear to myself - I've already got my railcard as an electronic version on the phone which I wasn't keen on but there doesn't seem to be any other option for the two together card!
I constantly worry that when the ticket inspector shows up that my phone will have a meltdown and I won't be able to show the perfectly valid ticket I bought that is stuck on a cloud somewhere - It's bad enough with the railcard, I board the train and load up the app and leave it on the screen and won't use my phone until its been checked.
Fortunately, battery power isn't an issue these days thanks to portable chargers and most long distance trains have USB ports.
 

Bletchleyite

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For me the winner has to be the CCST, I can easily put them in my wallet for safe keeping and I have a physical ticket to hand when required.
E-tickets bring fear to myself - I've already got my railcard as an electronic version on the phone which I wasn't keen on but there doesn't seem to be any other option for the two together card!

The Railcard site will sell one of those on plastic. It's only I think the 26-30 which is phone only.

I won't use digital Railcards because they use an m-ticket like format that requires signal etc. If they replace it with an e-ticket style format I can add as an Apple PKPASS or similar I'll be right for one.
 

miklcct

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The Railcard site will sell one of those on plastic. It's only I think the 26-30 which is phone only.

I won't use digital Railcards because they use an m-ticket like format that requires signal etc. If they replace it with an e-ticket style format I can add as an Apple PKPASS or similar I'll be right for one.
I'm forced to used one because I'm only qualified for the 26-30 Railcard or the Network Railcard, the latter useless for most of my journeys (which are mostly done between Monday - Friday with the use of Advance / Off-Peak tickets within the Network Railcard area).
 

CaptainHaddock

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Not universally true. For instance, a physical debit or credit card can be "skimmed", or contactless payments can be made if it is stolen. Neither of those things is true of contactless payment carried out via Apple/Google Pay unless the thief also knows your phone PIN.

If you use technology sensibly and responsibly, odds on it won't happen to you.
Any data you choose to put online, whether it be e-tickets, card details or photos can potentially be accessed and stolen by hackers.
 
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