Members' News

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RUSSIA: Aeroexpress has summarised the results of train services on-time performance on all Aeroexpress routes in 2018 and reported 99.8% schedule compliance.

The total of 72,243 train services was provided by the company last year, and 72,079 of them fully complied with the timetable. Some minor delays occurred due to reasons beyond the company’s control.

“Predictable travel times, along with ensured safety and comfort, are some of the main advantages of travelling by Aeroexpress,” said Alina Bisembaeva, CEO of Aeroexpress. “To achieve high accuracy for train services, our company has been continuously implementing a series of technical and organizational measures, including training our staff, maintaining equipment, updating technical regulations, etc.”

Aeroexpress trains run 200 times a day, transporting passengers between airports of the Moscow Air Cluster and Central Moscow. Travel time for a full run amounts to 35 minutes on Vnukovo and Sheremetyevo routes and 45 minutes on Domodedovo route. The journey time remained the same, even after the interim stops at Okruzhnaya and Verhniye Kotly were introduced along Sheremetyevo and Domodedovo routes in 2018.

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greater anglia new electric train 3

UK: The first of ten new Stansted Express trains has arrived to Norwich from Switzerland on Thursday 28 February, where it will undergo a series of safety and performance tests before it is passed as fit to go into passenger service.

The new Stansted Express electric trains will be longer, with more seats, plug and USB sockets, as well as air conditioning. They will have fast free wifi and improved passenger information screens.

Ian McConnell, Greater Anglia Franchising and Programmes Director, said: “It was an incredible sight to see this long modern-looking train travelling along our line. It’s a glimpse of the near future, when they will be carrying more passengers in comfort and style between Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and London.”

Testing is due to start on the new Stansted Express train later in March.

Martino Celeghini, Stadler technical project manager, said: “This order was a highly significant one for us, and we are delighted that within three years of contract-signing, trains were arriving on British soil.

“Following the start of testing on the bi-modes at the end of last year, we are pleased to begin working on testing and commissioning these electric trains with our UK partners.”

Greater Anglia is replacing every single existing train with brand new trains, including 58 made by Stadler and 111 made by Bombardier in Derby.

New trains will start to come into service from the middle of this year as part of a two-year roll out.

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HEX Oyster

UK: Contactless bank cards, mobile devices and Oyster cards will all be accepted on the fastest route between London Paddington and Heathrow Central from Tuesday 19 February. The quick and easy ways to pay follow the introduction of ticket barriers at Heathrow and on Platforms 6&7 at London Paddington.

With half of all pay as you go journeys in London now regularly made using a contactless card or mobile device, these payment options offer a quick and easy way to travel for the 17,000 passengers that use Heathrow Express each day, integrating it with paying for travel across all of the capital’s Tube, rail and bus network.

Children aged 15 and under travel free on Heathrow Express using their Zip Oyster card.

Using Contactless payment or Oyster costs the same as a Peak or Off-Peak Express Single, depending on the time of travel and is not included in daily or weekly fare capping. The best value Heathrow Express fares including return tickets and advance fares from £5.50 each way at weekends remain available online or via the Heathrow Express app. With barcode scanners on every ticket barrier, customers purchasing tickets online or via the app can also get on board quickly and easily.

Customers travelling in Business First class can also use Contactless or Oyster by touching in and purchasing an upgrade from the on-board team. Business First offers a more private, spacious environment with wider seating, tables you can work from and a selection of complimentary magazines and newspapers.

Working in partnership, Heathrow Express and Transport for London (TfL) have installed new multilingual ticket machines at Heathrow, which allow customers to easily purchase, top up or refund an Oyster card (up to £10) and makes paying for travel with Oyster simple and convenient.

Les Freer, Director of Heathrow Express said: “Speed is everything to Heathrow Express customers so the introduction of Contactless and Oyster offers quick and easy ways to pay for your journey. This also adds to our already wide range of ticketing options offering customers choice on how they make the most of our service on top of our advance tickets from £5.50 each way at weekends.”

Shashi Verma, Director of Strategy and Chief Technology Officer at TfL, said: “The extension of Oyster and the Contactless system to include Heathrow Express offers customers the opportunity to make their journeys more smooth and efficient – both are easier and quicker to use than paper tickets. We have also worked with Heathrow Express to provide new ticket machines at Heathrow, where customers can purchase an Oyster card to cover all their travel during their stay, making their visit much easier.
“Half of all Tube and rail pay as you go journeys are now regularly made using contactless payment because it is so quick and easy. We are committed to making paying for transport easier for everyone and this extension means that all rail services within Greater London now accept payment via Oyster and Contactless. We continue to work with the Department for Transport to support their aspirations to further expand the benefits of this world-renowned ticketing system to other key locations outside of London.”

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RUSSIA: 100,000 passengers paid for their Aeroexpress trips at the company’s turnstiles, using contactless payment options in 2018.

Contactless payments can be made at the Aeroexpress turnstiles with Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, and Union Pay contactless cards, Troika transport card, and mobile devices that support the functionality of payment options with Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Android Pay.

MasterCard turned out to be the most popular contactless payment option in 2018, with 45% of all transactions made with it.

“We have been constantly developing our sales channels and expanding the number of payment options so that our passengers could pay for their Aeroexpress journeys using any way that is the most convenient for them. As of today, our company offers cutting-edge payment options. An opportunity to purchase a ticket by simply touching a bank card or a mobile device onto a turnstile reader at the Aeroexpress terminal is one of them,” said Alina Bisembaeva, CEO of Aeroexpress.

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MALAYSIA: Sri Sutra Travel, a local travel agency in business and leisure travel, is partnering with Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd (ERL), the operator of KLIA Ekspres, the premium non-stop high-speed train service that connects the city centre to Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA & KLIA2). Aside from purchasing KLIA Ekspres tickets at KLIA Ekspres ticket counters, website and app, travellers can now purchase tickets on Sutra.my and TravelCompute One-Stop Travel Technology platform.

Headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, Sri Sutra Travel is an online platform that provides airport transfers, accommodation, car hire, tailored tours, bus and rail ticket reservations, concert and sporting tickets and other related services to travellers. “We are definitely proud and excited to be partnering with one of Malaysia’s leading travel consultancies. Having been in the tourism industry for decades, Sri Sutra Travel has an extensive market both locally and internationally. “This partnership is important to ERL as it will expand KLIA Ekspres’ reach further within the Malaysian travel industry, and it makes it simple for travel agents to package the KLIA Ekspres with other local attractions and services,” said Noormah Mohd Noor, Chief Executive Officer of ERL.

Sri Sutra Travel CEO, Dato’ Syed Razif Al-Yahya also expressed his delight in the partnership. He said: “Sri Sutra Travel is committed to provide our customers with the best service for their convenience. Now, they can purchase KLIA Ekspres tickets after booking their flights so they can travel to and from the airport seamlessly and comfortably.”

To purchase the KLIA Ekspres tickets, simply log on to Sutra.my and click on “KLIA Ekspres”. You can select your starting location and destination (KLIA/KLIA2 to KL Sentral or vice versa), as well as the date. After selecting the number of Adult or Child (2-12 years old) tickets, fill in the contact details. Lastly, review your booking before you make the payment.