Thousands of rail travellers will now be able to get around the West Midlands the smart way using a new look Swift card.
Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) has today (Monday March 20) started to switch all 9,000 customers on its nTrain direct debit ticket scheme from traditional paper tickets to the hi-tech smartcard, which has also been given a fresh new design.
It means 12,000 customers now use Swift on rail in addition to 130,000 who already use the cards on the region’s bus and tram networks.
The nTrain direct debit Swift cards are accepted by London Midland trains which operates local rail services in the area covered by TfWM, which is the transport arm of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).
They can also be used within the region on Virgin Trains, Chiltern Railways, Arriva Trains Wales and Cross Country trains, whose services also call at stations The cards, which can be read by train staff with hand-held equipment, will also activate ticket barriers at New Street, Snow Hill, Moor Street, University, Five Ways, Birmingham International and Coventry stations.
Cllr Roger Lawrence, WMCA lead for transport, said: “Customers no longer have to worry about getting a ticket each month, or getting stuck at a rail gate, and they will also see the cost of their monthly ticket reduced by moving over to Swift.
“Swift offers a range of benefits and passengers can be assured TfWM will continue to work on enhancing smart ticketing to support better connectivity across the wider Midlands region.”
As well as launching the new product, TfWM has also unveiled a new look for Swift with a fresh purple design replacing the old blue livery.
Matt Lewis, head of Swift for TfWM, said: “This is an exciting further chapter in the continued rollout of Swift smart ticketing throughout the West Midlands.
“With further great new tickets and functions being introduced in the coming months we have taken the opportunity to update and refresh the brand design to ensure that, in keeping with the new tickets that we continue to rollout, it remains at the cutting edge.”
More than three million journeys are made using Swift every month and the 9,000 train travellers being switched over from today are in addition to 3,000 rail passengers on the nNetwork direct debit scheme who were moved over to the smartcard last September.
Swift, which offers a range of ticket options including pay as you go for bus and trams, can be obtained from nNetwork travel shops or from www.myswiftcard.com