The Anonymous Widower

TfGM Announces Contactless Payments On Metrolink Trams

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Rail Technology Magazine.

This is the first paragraph.

Passengers will be able to ‘touch-in’ using their contactless cards on Manchester Metrolink trams from July 15, Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) announced today.

I shall be there with my contactless credit card on Monday week, to check that this is not fake news.

I look forward to the day, when Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield and Leeds are all one contactless card area for trams, trains and buses.

When you consider that the combined area will be smaller than Greater London’s contactless area and that the distance between Lime Street and Leeds or Sheffield, is less than Reading to Shenfield, which will be contactless when Crossrail opens, the problems can’t be technological.

If the leaders of the four major Northern cities can agree this advance in ticketing, they will do more for the North, than any other short-term  transport development will achieve.

July 4, 2019 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , ,


  1. TfGM hopelessly botched their “Get Me There” contactless card introduction, especially on the Metrolink Trams. I remember authorising this in ~2013 and it still does not work. In the Meantime Stagecoach and First have manage to get contactless cards working [and interworking] just on their buses and I have been using them for years.

    A key difference is that the cards here are standard ITSO cards and can carry multiple products for use all over the world, whereas Oyster is proprietary and works only in London.

    Another difference is that an all bus card in London costs about 50% more than an equivalent card on all Stagecoach services in Greater Manchester and about 25% more than an all bus one. When Andy Burnham [Labour Mayor] won his election and confirmed he would try to reregulate the buses, Stagecoach hiked their weekly ticket over 10%.

    Some people can remember how bas it was when the buses were municipally run – long queues even to catch a bus in the morning, frequent cancellations and very poor driver behaviour and some pretty tired buses.

    Comment by R. Mark Clayton | July 5, 2019 | Reply

    • The nig difference with this system is it seems tonwork with bank cards and that probably means ApplePay and AndroidPay, wh8ch it mist do. I shall be up on the 15th to give it a try. I believe strongly, that wventually we can do the whole of the UK with bank card ticketing. And that includes HS2. If people know they haven’t got a ticket and just turn up with a bank card, many more people will use the train, tram or bus! I’m not sure if the unions will like it, but the RMT will come up with a reason to object.

      Comment by AnonW | July 5, 2019 | Reply

    • Personally, I’m not keen on Dtagecoach as a conpany and find their methods have flaws where passengers can end up paying more.
      A simple example is try and buy an Off Peak Return at St. Pancras for Sheffield, Nottingham etc. and the ticket machine tries hard to get you to buy a First Class Return Is this deliberate design or just bad logic on the designer’s part?

      Comment by AnonW | July 5, 2019 | Reply

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