Vix eO provides additional payment options for UTA riders
Life just got easier for Utah Transit Authority (UTA) riders in Salt Lake City, UT, thanks to a partnership with Seattle-based Vix Technology, a leading provider of electronic fare collection solutions. UTA riders have had the option to pay for fares with third-party and bank-issued contactless cards since 2009 using Vix eO (easy and Open), and in October 2013 Vix Technology expanded its account-based fare collection solution to include FAREPAY, third party prepaid contactless cards.
“In eO, UTA’s existing fare collection system, Vix has developed a product that is inherently flexible and convenient,” says Doug Thomas, General Manager, Vix Technology, Seattle, WA.
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Vix added UTA’s FAREPAY contactless card offering to Vix eO in conjunction with InComm, a provider of prepaid cards. UTA FAREPAY cards, valid for all UTA services, can be purchased at retailers throughout Salt Lake City, online, or at UTA agency offices. Riders can fund their cards either through the retail channel or online and pay for transit by tapping as they board and exit UTA buses and trains. Ticket vending machines are completely unnecessary for riders with a FAREPAY card.
“In the Salt Lake City region, there are close to 300 retailers that are now sales agents for the Utah Transit Authority,” Thomas says. “People can go in, buy a FAREPAY card, activate it, and use it to take TRAX (UTA’s light rail) home. It’s extraordinarily simple.”
Vix says that account-based systems help transit agencies move away from cash collection by providing a safe and secure back-office solution for fare processing and by furnishing them with vital ridership reporting to improve service planning and operational efficiencies.
“We intentionally designed the system to maximize extensibility and ease of use,” Thomas says. “Whether the rider presents a pre-paid FAREPAY card, a bank-issued contactless credit card, an employee building access badge, a ski resort season pass, or an NFC-based mobile wallet from Google or ISIS, all that matters to us is that the fare media is associated with a valid account in the system.”
All of these forms of contactless media are accepted by Vix eO for UTA today.
The Vix eO platform leverages an open, modular architecture and is highly configurable, making it easy for transit agencies to implement their unique fare policies and adapt to future changes in technology. Even better, it lowers the cost to entry for an advanced fare collection solution.
According to Vix, the benefits of the Vix eO platform for UTA riders include:
- Fast and hassle-free fare payment – riders need not carry cash, find exact change, or keep track of paper tickets or transfer slips.
- Lost card protection – tickets and passes are saved in the rider’s account, even if the card is lost.
- Easy account management – riders can reload their account via phone, web, retail outlet, or set up recurring payments via auto-load.