A New App To Pay For Bus, Streetcar Rides

May 17, 2016

An app should be in place for ticketing when the streetcar begins passenger service in September.
Credit Bill Rinehart / WVXU

Metro passengers will be able to pay for their bus or streetcar rides with a smartphone or tablet. The Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority board Tuesday morning approved a contract with a company that develops mobile ticketing apps.

Metro spokeswoman Brandy Jones says Passport Inc. has similar apps in Sacramento and Jacksonville.

"They have had really good success with their customers. It has tremendously improved the customer experience. And so we are expecting to have similar results here in Cincinnati."

The free app will be available in August for iPhone and Android. "It will be available in time for the streetcar grand opening," says Jones.

Passport is the same company that operates Cincinnati's parking meter app. Jones says the ticket app will be a separate download from the existing parking app.

"Our customers will now be able to plan their trip to find out which route works best for them. They can then track their bus in real time as it will feed into our real-time feed. And they can pay for their fare on a secure app."

Correction: An earlier version of this story reported that the same app can be used to pay for parking and for tickets. Metro spokeswoman Brandy Jones says that is incorrect. The story has been changed to reflect this correction.