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METROBITS - The world's subways unearthed.METROBITS - The world's subways unearthed.




  



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Fare Collection



Different modes of fare collection can be found in the world's metro systems. Physically, there may be either fare gates or the so-called honour system, with modes of payment reaching from token to smartcard.



Physical arrangements

Fare gates or honour system.

Fare gates

Gates separate the paid area physically. The majority of the world's metros uses this system. Smartcard payment is straightforward with gates as people are driven to touch their cards when entering and when leaving the paid area.

Disadvantages for the handicapped, the pregnant, and people with baggage. Broken turnstiles can cause rush-hour bottlenecks. In case of fire or panic, gates must open. Misuse of emergency opening needs to be prevented, usually through the presence of staff.

Adelaidegates (partly)
Alicantegates (partly)
Amsterdamgates, nationwide smartcard
Baltimoregates (subway), honour system (LRT)
Bangkokgates, smartcard, RFID token
Barcelonagates, smartcard
Beijingaccess/exit gates
Bilbaogates
Bostongates, smartcard
Brisbanegates (partly), smartcard ('go card')
Buenos Aires gates
Changchunaccess/exit gates
Chengdugates
Chicagogates, smartcard
Chongqingaccess/exit gates
Dalianaccess/exit gates
Delhigates, token, RFID token
Dubaigates
Fukuokagates, smartcard
Genoagates
Guadalajara access gates, token, smartcard
Guangzhouaccess/exit gates, RFID token
Hiroshimagates
Hong Kongaccess/exit gates, smartcard ('Octopus')
Istanbulgates, token
Kaohsiunggates
Kievgates, token
Kuala Lumpurgates, nationwide smartcard
Lisbon gates
Londonaccess/exit gates (tube), honour system (DLR), smartcard ('Oyster')
Lyonaccess gates, smartcard
Madridgates
Manilagates
Melbournegates (city centre), honour system, smartcard
Mexico City access gates, smartcard
Miamigates (metro), free (people mover)
Milan gates
Minskgates, token
Monterrey access gates, smartcard
Montreal access gates, smartcard
Moscowgates, smartcard
Nagoyagates
Nanjingaccess/exit gates
New Yorkgates, smartcard
Osakagates, smartcard
Oslo gates
Parisaccess gates (metro), access/exit gates (RER), smartcard ('Navigo')
Parisaccess gates (metro), access/exit gates (RER), smartcard ('Navigo')
Perthgates (partly), smartcard
Philadelphiagates, token
Rio de Janeirogates
Rome gates
Rotterdamgates, nationwide smartcard
Saint Petersburg gates, token
San Franciscogates (BART), honour system (MUNI)
Santiago access gates, smartcard
Sapporogates
Shanghaiaccess/exit gates
Shenyangaccess/exit gates
Shenzhenaccess/exit gates, RFID token
Singaporegates, smartcard ('ezlink')
Sofia gates
Stockholmaccess gates, smartcard (touchless)
Sydneygates (partly)
Taipeigates, RFID token, smartcard ('EasyCard')
Tbilisigates, token
Tianjinaccess/exit gates
Tokyogates, smartcard ('Suica')
Torontogates
Turingates
Valenciagates
Valparaiso gates, smartcard
Warsawgates
Wuhanaccess/exit gates
Xiangates
Yerevangates, token


Honour system

Also called proof-of-payment (POP) system. The paid area is marked by signs or stripes on the floor. Ticket inspectors randomly check tickets on-train, sometimes working undercover (without uniforms). Passengers without a ticket will be fined. The loss in revenue by fare evasers might be absorbed by the income through these fines.

Advantages: Stations need not be staffed.

Disadvantages: More fare dodging. People can just forget to pay and get caught. Ticket inspectors, though usually operating in teams, are in danger to get beaten. Smart Card systems are not straightforward with the honour system as passengers can easily forget to swipe their cards at exits.

Antwerp honour system
Athenshonour system
Baltimoregates (subway), honour system (LRT)
Berlinhonour system
Bonnhonour system
Brussels honour system, smartcard
Budapest honour system
Buffalohonour system
Charleroi honour system
Colognehonour system
Copenhagenhonour system
Dortmundhonour system
Duesseldorfhonour system
Essenhonour system
Frankfurthonour system
Hamburghonour system
Hanoverhonour system
Helsinkihonour system, smartcard
Lausanne honour system
Lillehonour system
Liverpoolhonour system
Londonaccess/exit gates (tube), honour system (DLR), smartcard ('Oyster')
Los Angeleshonour system
Melbournegates (city centre), honour system, smartcard
Munichhonour system
Nuremberghonour system
Oportohonour system
Prague honour system
Rennes honour system
San Franciscogates (BART), honour system (MUNI)
Stuttgarthonour system
Vancouverhonour system
Viennahonour system
Wuppertalhonour system






   

Fare gates

Photo: Madeleine station in Paris.








Methods of payment

Smartcard, RFID token, token, free. The classical mode of payment, the paper or magnet strip ticket, is almost ubiquitous, in addition to other payment systems.

Smartcard

This is a debit card which operates a reader at each fare gate approached. The reader will open the gate and record the start point of the journey and then record the exit point and deduct the required fare.

Advantage: Can automatically grant discounts, e.g. stop increasing the fare when the amount of a day pass has been reached.

Disadvantage: Requires fare gates to work smoothly. Can be misused to track passenger's journeys.

Amsterdamgates, nationwide smartcard
Atlantasmartcard
Bangkokgates, smartcard, RFID token
Barcelonagates, smartcard
Bostongates, smartcard
Brisbanegates (partly), smartcard ('go card')
Brussels honour system, smartcard
Chicagogates, smartcard
Fukuokagates, smartcard
Guadalajara access gates, token, smartcard
Helsinkihonour system, smartcard
Hong Kongaccess/exit gates, smartcard ('Octopus')
Kuala Lumpurgates, nationwide smartcard
Londonaccess/exit gates (tube), honour system (DLR), smartcard ('Oyster')
Lyonaccess gates, smartcard
Melbournegates (city centre), honour system, smartcard
Mexico City access gates, smartcard
Monterrey access gates, smartcard
Montreal access gates, smartcard
Moscowgates, smartcard
New Yorkgates, smartcard
Osakagates, smartcard
Parisaccess gates (metro), access/exit gates (RER), smartcard ('Navigo')
Perthgates (partly), smartcard
Rotterdamgates, nationwide smartcard
Santiago access gates, smartcard
Seoulsmartcard
Singaporegates, smartcard ('ezlink')
Stockholmaccess gates, smartcard (touchless)
Taipeigates, RFID token, smartcard ('EasyCard')
Tokyogates, smartcard ('Suica')
Valparaiso gates, smartcard


RFID token

Similar to Smart Card. A coin-sized plastic chip contains a so-called RFID tag. This enables the system to calculate the amount paid by the passenger and the fare. The chip coin has to be touched with the entry gate and inserted in the exit gate. When the fare for the journey is correct, the token is retained by the exit gate and the gate opens. When the fare is insufficient, the exit gate will reject the coin and the passenger has to recharge it at a machine.

Advantages: Combines the portability and robustness of a token with the advanced features of a smart card.

Bangkokgates, smartcard, RFID token
Delhigates, token, RFID token
Guangzhouaccess/exit gates, RFID token
Shenzhenaccess/exit gates, RFID token
Taipeigates, RFID token, smartcard ('EasyCard')


Token

A diminishing system using metal coins. The coin has to be inserted in the access gate and is usually good for a journey of any length in the entire metro system.

Advantages: The portability and robustness of the token.

Delhigates, token, RFID token
Guadalajara access gates, token, smartcard
Istanbulgates, token
Kievgates, token
Minskgates, token
Philadelphiagates, token
Saint Petersburg gates, token
Tbilisigates, token
Yerevangates, token


Free

Very few urban rail systems in the world are free to use.

Advantages: No cost for ticket vending machines, fare gates, ticket inspectors.

Miamigates (metro), free (people mover)






Photos by M. Rohde. Page updated 5 Sep 2010 (database entries may be more recent).


Reference

Railway Technical Web Pages: Fare Collection. 2010.
SkyscraperCity: Honor payment system, fare dodging.
UITP: Moscow Metro: the World’s First Major Transport System to operate fully contactless with NXP’s MIFARE Technology. 2010.






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