Posted on in News

UK: The High Court has ruled in favour of the Office or Road and Rail (ORR) agreeing that Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL) is not permitted to introduce all of its proposed new charges for train operators to use its track, which links Heathrow Airport to the Great Western main line.

20 years ago, Heathrow Airport has spent £1bn building the five-mile rail link connecting Heathrow Express to the Great Western mainline.

Four Crossrail trains an hour will run between Paddington and Heathrow Terminals 2 and 4, replacing Heathrow Connect trains from May 2018.

HAL has proposed that each Crossrail train should pay a levy or toll for the use of its track and stations serving the airport.

ORR had decided Heathrow couldn’t charge trains for using the line, saying it would cost around £42m a year.

Heathrow Airport Limited then launched a judicial review of this decision and after a three day hearing, the High Court has dismissed airport’s application and uphold ORR’s decision.

Airport Ground Access Conference banner2000

Posted on in News

Mike Bones, Senior Consultant at North Star Consultancy

OPINION: The theme of the recent UITP Transport Summit which took place in Montreal was ‘Lead the Transition’ and whilst there were some excellent presentations and workshops where this was at the helm, Montreal itself has some work to do to make their own transport network work more collaboratively.

The Montreal Metro System (inspired by the Paris Metro) was inaugurated in 1966. It is therefore surprising, that there is still no metro service linking the airport to downtown Montreal. A Blue Line extension has been proposed and has been in the pipeline for several years and is still a priority for the Mayor of Montreal and Société de transport de Montréal (STM). However, this proposal faces conflicting budget and political pressure from the Federal Government with their preferred priority of a light rail line.

Montreal Airport Bus

Therefore, alighting passengers at the airport requiring public transport into downtown Montreal are faced with a single option of the regular 747 bus. Whilst this operates on a 24/7 basis for a flat fee of $10, it seems a somewhat inefficient and rudimentary option of transportation, if compared to other major international cities. The bus must negotiate its journey into town via an already congested road network and therefore can take between 45-60 minutes, for what is a distance of only 9 miles.

Taxis are a rather expensive option at a fixed fare of $40 so the demand for the 747 buses is high, but this does not give visitors a very good first impression to Montreal’s transport system or the city for that matter. It is hard to think of any other major cities where the city centres are not connected to the airport via some type of rail system. Montreal needs to bite the bullet and extend the metro, not at the expense of the alternative mass transit system but as a pre-cursor and, subsequently, as a complementary option. To make this happen, there needs to be alignment between federal and local government to agree on a joined-up plan that will allow both options to be funded and developed within their own differing timescales, synergising where appropriate.

Posted on in News

AUSTRALIA: The Forrestfield-Airport Link is a step closer to reality with a construction site now established and work underway at the Airport Central Station.

The construction site at the Perth Airport, located near the control tower, will be ready for the tunnel boring machine to start travelling through in early 2018.

The tunnel boring machine will first break ground in Forrestfield in late July, starting its two-year journey to Bayswater. Three new stations will be built as part of the new rail link - Belmont Station, Airport Central Station and Forrestfield Station. Perth Airport users will have access to a direct 18-minute train journey to the central business district.

The works at Perth Airport coincide with the release of artist impressions of Airport Central Station. The underground station has been designed to create a seamless journey to the airport terminals via an elevated walkway. The station has a striking roof shape inspired by the aerodynamic features of aircraft with ample natural light to the concourse and platform levels.

The Forrestfield-Airport Link project is closely aligned with Perth Airport's redevelopment plans to consolidate the domestic and international airport terminals. Works have begun at the airport to construct the underground station box structure adjacent to the existing airport control tower. Like most stations on the Transperth network, the station will have lifts, stairs, escalators, toilets, ticketing and information services, a kiosk and customer service staff.

The Forrestfield-Airport Link is expected to be completed in late 2020.

Posted on in News

MALAYSIA: KLIA Ekspres was awarded the Outstanding Green Air Rail Transport by the Malaysia Canada Business Council (MCBC). The Business Excellence Award Gala Dinner was held in conjunction with MCBC’s 25th Anniversary to honour and recognise industry leaders and influential entrepreneurs in bilateral and global commerce.

The award was presented by Deputy Minister of International Trade, YB Datuk Chua Tee Yong and witnessed by Her Excellency Judith St George, the High Commissioner for Canada. Accepting the award on behalf of ERL was the Chief Executive Officer, Noormah Mohd Noor.

MCBC Business Excellence Award web

“We are thrilled that KLIA Ekspres is positively recognised for its green contribution in the transport industry. This award is a testament to our ongoing commitment in complying with the Environmental Management System,” said Noormah at the Gala Dinner.

“We would also like to thank our passengers for their continuous support and trusting KLIA Ekspres as their preferred mode of transfer. Our passengers also reduce their carbon footprint when they choose to travel on KLIA Ekspres,” Noormah said.

Every year, passengers help save 44,800 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions when they travel by KLIA Ekspres. ERL’s wholly-owned operations and maintenance company, ERL Maintenance Support Sdn Bhd has been certified ISO 14001:2004 compliant for Environmental Management System. The operations of KLIA Ekspres are also in compliance with the country’s Environmental Quality Act 1974.

This recent recognition will help KLIA Ekspres educate the public on how trains are among the most environmentally sustainable transportation mode.

Posted on in News

CANADA: Premier of Ontario Kathleen Wynne has announced that the province is moving forward with the preliminary design work on the speed rail along the Toronto-Windsor corridor and is investing $15 million in a comprehensive environmental assessment. Ontario will establish a new governing body to oversee the ambitious work required to design and implement high speed rail.

The announcement comes as the province releases a new report by David Collenette, Ontario's Special Advisor on high speed rail. In 2015, Collenette was asked to assess the project's feasibility. After extensive consultations, his report has concluded that there is a business case for high speed rail along the Toronto-Windsor corridor and that there are opportunities to engage the private sector in financing and delivering the project.

High speed rail could cut travel times between Toronto and Windsor from four hours to just over two. Proposed stops on the new HSR line include Windsor, Chatham, London, Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph and Toronto, with a connection to Pearson International Airport.

figure es 2 proposed future southwestern ontario passenger rail network

The report recommends connecting Pearson International Airport to the high speed rail via expanded Malton GO Station, which will be linked to the airport terminals via people-mover system.

"The GTAA is very pleased to see the government moving ahead with this important initiative given the benefits that a link to Toronto Pearson would bring," said Howard Eng, Greater Toronto Airports Authority President and CEO. "A high-speed rail service along this corridor would provide vital regional connections and help to relieve the congestion that today is stifling our economy and impacting the quality of life for all Ontarians. It could also be a key building block in support of Toronto Pearson's mega hub vision and would move us one step closer to making an integrated regional transit centre at Toronto Pearson a reality."

In early 2016, the GTAA announced plans to develop a regional transit centre to connect the airport area to key employment and residential areas throughout the Greater Golden Horseshoe. In addition to serving as a connector for airport passengers to surrounding regions, the transit centre at Toronto Pearson would provide crucial connectivity to the 300,000 workers in the Airport Employment Zone, the second-largest employment area in the country.

A request for bids for the design required to support the Environmental Assessment for the full length of the Toronto-Windsor corridor will be issued this fall.

Download the full report here: http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/publications/high-speed-rail-in-ontario-final-report/pdfs/high-speed-rail-in-ontario-final-report.pdf

Airport Ground Access Conference banner2000

Posted on in News

USA: NY Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) selected WSP (former WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff) to conduct preliminary engineering and other planning work for a new AirTrain connection to LaGuardia Airport.

The firm’s work will take a major step forward in advancing the LaGuardia AirTrain project – which will create a much-needed rail link to the airport.

Image 03a Cropped Parkway View

LaGuardia is currently the only major East Coast airport without rail access. By 2030, the number of passengers at LaGuardia is expected to increase by more than 6 million annually and the AirTrain is essential to accommodate that growth. WSP will lead the preliminary planning work for three different components of the project:

  • Construction of up to two new AirTrain stations at the new terminal buildings at the airport
  • Construction of an AirTrain station at Willets Point
  • Construction related to the “right-of-way” for the train from the airport to Willets Point

"The new AirTrain will improve passenger experience, reduce traffic congestion and serve as a key part of the modernization and transformation of LaGuardia into a world-class airport," Governor Cuomo said. "LaGuardia Airport is an essential part of New York’s economy and transportation network, and by providing additional transit options we will support new economic opportunities and growth throughout the region.”

The LaGuardia AirTrain will serve a high-tech three-station complex at Willets Point. The station complex will create a seamless transfer for passengers between completely new LIRR and 7-line subway stations to be built over the next five years at Willets Point and the new AirTrain stop.

WSP’s mandate is to develop plans and to engineer the easiest possible transfer of MTA passengers with luggage to and from the AirTrain. The LaGuardia AirTrain link with the LIRR will provide a guaranteed 30-minute ride to the airport from Midtown Manhattan’s two rail hubs – Grand Central and Penn Stations – as well as access to commuters coming from Long Island.

Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye said, "LaGuardia Airport is the only major airport in the region without direct rail transit access. With passenger demand expected to reach 34 million annually at LaGuardia by 2030, providing mass transit access to the airport is fundamental to transforming it into a world-class facility that supports future growth, while reducing roadway congestion and resulting emissions."

WSP will analyze and assess alignment alternatives, conduct a geotechnical review, create a conceptual design for both the train right-of-way and the stations, and develop cost estimates for the project. As part of the planning work, the firm also will conduct a detailed ridership analysis, analyze public-private partnerships and other options to identify the most advantageous financing plan for the AirTrain, as well as evaluate expanded parking and centralized car rental operations at a new Willets Point station complex.

Reliable and efficient rail service to and from the airport is critical to manage on-site airport parking, improve drop off and pick up activities at the terminal frontages and reduce congestion on and off the airport, including on the Grand Central Parkway – the main artery to and from the airport – and nearby neighborhood streets.

Posted on in Members' News

USA: The Port Authority New York New Jersey (PANYNJ) Board of Commissioners has authorised $57 million in planning funds for the first phase of the PATH system extension to Newark Liberty International Airport, a projected $1.7-billion project that is a key component of the board’s 2017-2026 capital plan and essential to improved regional rail service for the commuting public.

“The Port Authority is committed to making critical investments in a transportation network that supports regional growth and meets the demands of the millions of people who live, work and visit the region,” said Port Authority Chairman John Degnan. “This planning effort will provide analysis of key components – ridership data, cost updates, environmental and economic impacts – to help the agency continue to evaluate the project before moving forward with construction.”

“Our 10-year capital plan dedicates $32 billion towards strategic investments to support the modernisation of critical transportation infrastructure,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. “This project improves transportation access to Newark Airport while extending PATH’s trans-Hudson network in Newark.”

Subject to completion of the environmental review process and project authorisation by the Port Authority board, the project would include a new station in Newark’s South Ward Dayton Street neighbourhood, a new rail yard facility and modification of existing platforms at Newark Penn Station to accommodate increased passenger flow.

The authorisation provides funding critical to move the project through preliminary design and the required environmental review process. It includes funds for environmental and transportation services, including preliminary engineering work as well as program and project management services.

Currently, the PATH Newark-to-World Trade Center line’s western-most point is Newark Penn Station. The project will extend the line west through the Dayton Street neighbourhood in Newark’s South Ward, ending at the Newark Liberty rail link station.

Once approved, construction of the extension is expected to begin in 2020 with full revenue service to start in 2026. As a multimodal transportation hub, the new station also will reduce traffic congestion and provide environmental benefits through increased use of public transportation.

Posted on in News

UK: With over 160 million passengers expected to use London’s airports this year, London Southend Airport has compared data for each of the locations to see which would win in a race to the city.

The race started at an origin common to all the main airports and one of the most popular – Amsterdam. It ended at a London icon –the Stock Exchange (or at the platform you would step on to at nearest tube, St Paul’s, when arriving by London Underground).

To calculate the race times, London Southend Airport added together the flight time, aircraft taxi time from touch down to gate, walking time from gate to airport exit and public transport from the airport exit to the platform at St Paul’s. This gave a total time for each airport.

Southen Race infogr web

First was London City Airport, taking 70 minutes in total from Amsterdam to the London Stock Exchange. This is based on a 26-minute flight time, 3 minutes of aircraft taxi time from touch down to gate, a gate to exit walking time of 5 minutes, followed by public transport from the airport exit to St Paul’s tube station of 36 minutes.

London Southend wasn’t far behind, with a total journey time of 99 minutes, comprised of a 24-minute flight, five-minute aircraft taxi and a walk of just three minutes from the gate. The final leg, 67 minutes of public transport to St Paul’s, is by far the longest part of the journey.

Despite the speed and convenience of the Heathrow Express, London’s biggest airport only comes third in this race to the city. That’s down to a lengthy 10-minute aircraft taxi time and a 15-minute walk from the gate, as well as the 52 minutes of public transport needed to get to St Paul’s. In total it should take 104 minutes from Amsterdam.

Gatwick was up next with timings as follows: 27 mins (flight), 10 mins (aircraft taxi), 22 mins (walk from gate to exit), plus 62 mins (public transport to St. Paul’s). Total – 121 minutes.

Stansted: 25 mins (flight), 10 mins (aircraft taxi), 9 mins (walk from gate), plus 69 minutes to St. Paul’s from Stansted. Total: 113 minutes.

And Luton: 26 mins (flight), 6 mins (aircraft taxi), 6 mins (walk from gate), plus 87 mins (public transport from airport exit to St Paul’s – which includes the shuttle bus from the airport to the train station). Total – 126 minutes.

So, the line-up of London Airports, ranked in terms of time from Amsterdam, right into the heart of the city, is as follows:

  1. City (70 minutes)
  2. London Southend (99 minutes)
  3. Heathrow (104 minutes)
  4. Stansted (113 minutes)
  5. Gatwick (121 minutes)
  6. Luton (126 minutes)

Glyn Jones, CEO of Stobart Aviation (which owns London Southend Airport) commented: “I am a fan of London City airport, and am not surprised to see it top the table, but it has some interesting challenges. It only operates half days at weekends, and between the hours of 06:30 and 22:30 during weekdays. A number of aircraft types are restricted at London City because of noise levels and operational constraints. Visibility and wind are a big issue, something I know for a fact, as London Southend takes more than its fair share of the resulting diverts. But that aside, it is an excellent airport serving London’s financial centre well.

“I was, of course, very interested to see where our own airport, London Southend, figured in the table in terms of the Race to the City. For me, coming second is encouraging and a good start, but it’s still not good enough. London deserves better. Our flagship airport is, without doubt, Heathrow, yet it is ‘mid-table’, at best, on this all-important metric of getting into London. After all, it’s London the arriving passengers want, not the airport!

“So here’s a thought: let’s introduce rail franchises to airports and make it easier for airports to bid for them. At London Southend, we operate our own train station, but what about the rail franchise too? We could tailor the service specifically with the needs of the air passenger in mind, reduce stops, reduce waiting times in between services and reduce further the time into the centre of London.

“Clearly, our service at London Southend is already pretty good but “good, is the enemy of great.” And to become great, we need to reduce air traffic delays, cut taxiing times at airports, minimise transit and immigration times on arrivals and, yes, contribute far more fully to surface access provision. Operating our own rail franchises would be one start point, improving transparency of information to the consumer, as we do here, so that passenger choices are as well informed as they can be, is another. In the end, we have to put the customer at the heart of all we do. It’s how we try to operate London Southend but don’t take my word for it. The next time you travel to or from Amsterdam, give my race a try, and fly superfast through London Southend Airport.”

Airport Ground Access Conference banner2000

Posted on in News

arlanda express print 8324 web

SWEDEN: Arlanda Express has been yet again recognised as a company that provides the best service in Sweden offering land-based transport. This is the fifth consecutive year that Arlanda Express has claimed the top spot in ServiceScore’s nationwide survey among Swedish customers and consumers.

ServiceScore® measures how Swedish consumers perceive customer responsiveness and service among companies offering land-based transport.

“All companies can offer a high level of service for one or two years if they really put their minds to it. But maintaining a top level year after year requires commitment, which is something that most lack. Our personnel are quite simply outstanding,” says Per Thorstenson, CEO of Arlanda Express.

Arlanda Express has also won awards for its commitment in the area of diversity, and its staff speak 25 languages.

Posted on in News

USA: Instead of building a rail link to the airport San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo is considering installing a dedicated lane for autonomous vehicles only.

“I agree that light rail should have gone to the airport when that line was built 26 years ago. Now we face a different, and much more expensive, challenge: retrofitting a line that would cost $800 million or more, at a time when we’ve got many other transit projects (BART, Caltrain electrification, Diridon Station, bus rapid transit, and Eastridge light rail). That’s why I’m working with our Department of Transportation (DoT) team to explore some less costly alternatives, including an autonomous-only lane between Diridon and the airport,” the Mayor said answering a letter sent to him from one of the San Jose citizens.

Liccardo said he is particularly interested in the route along Coleman from the airport to Diridon.

“It makes sense for air travelers looking for a quick, inexpensive way to get to various transit options, and it would help support San Jose as Silicon Valley’s urban center,” the Mayor added.

Jim Ortbal, Director of the DoT said that the department is preparing for a Request for Information that is targeted for release in June, asking companies in the autonomous vehicles industry to give their ideas for testing and eventually implementing the system in San Jose.

Airport Ground Access Conference banner2000

Posted on in News

INDONESIA: Construction has started on a 13.5km rail link connecting Adi Sumarmo International Airport and Central Java from Surakarta (also known as Solo).

The line will be built by a consortium of Indonesian Railways (KAI), PT Angkasa Pura I, and PT Pembanunan Perumahan.

The line will run on 3.5km of existing rail tracks and 10km newly built tracks. Journey time from the airport to the city centre will take 15 minutes.

The airport, which currently handles 1.5 million passengers per year, is also being doubled in size. The work on the airport and the rail link due to be completed in 2018.

Posted on in News

UK: Transport Minister Andrew Jones has confirmed a £173.5 million transport funding package for Leeds, which includes new integrated bus corridors, improved park and ride facilities and better wayfinding. 

The package also allows Leeds to develop proposals for local rail improvements, including an airport parkway station, subject to wider rail industry consultation.

With the support the DfT has now given, Leeds City Council and West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) will now develop a range of improvements including the proposals for a new parkway station on the Leeds to Harrogate line to serve Leeds Bradford Airport and also act as a park and ride in both directions.

The Department for Transport forecasts usage of Leeds Bradford Airport could more than double to 7.1m passengers a year by 2030 rising to over nine million by 2050. Along with improved access by rail, Leeds City Council is also currently considering three options for enhanced road access to the airport with an update to be released shortly.

Posted on in News

bybanen flesland4

NORWAY: Saturday 22nd April marked the official opening day of the Bybanen light rail line extension to Bergen Airport.

“Flesland is the most important gateway to the rest of the country and the world and the opening of the rail line today marks the completion of the Bybanen extension to the South,” City Council representative Anna Elisa Tryti said.

The journey from city centre to the airport takes 45 minutes to complete. The new station at the airport is located outside the New Terminal, which is due to open on August 17. The existing terminal is a 3-5 minute walk from the station.

The project has created 13,000 jobs and improved access to a community of 9,000 homes.

“We have been looking forward to this day, it is an important milestone that Bergen citizens and visitors can now take the Bybanen all the way to the airport. This will be a very affordable way to and from the airport. Besides, the city rail is very punctual, which is an important factor when you are trying to catch a flight. However, for us in Skyss, it is also important to emphasize that the Bybanen is not just an airport train, but is designed for all of those who travel on different parts of the route between Bergen Park and Bergen Airport,” Skyss Sales and Marketing Manager Hanne Alver Krum said.

bybanen flesland

Posted on in News

DSC1452

ITALY: A new people mover connecting Galleo Galilei Airport with Pisa Central railway station started operations on the 1.8km route.

The journey is 5 min long with an intermediate stop at San Giusto/Aurelia with nearly 1,300 spaces at the two car parks. Trains run between 6am and midnight with peak frequencies of 5 min.

A single ticket costs EUR 2.70.

The line was built by Condotte Spa, its subsidiary Inso, and Leitner and is operated by a concession-holding company Pisamover S.p.A., which is also responsible for the management of the transport service and the two car parks.

percorso v3 en

 

 

Posted on in Events News

GARA Brussels long logo notext

EVENTS: The Global AirRail Alliance (GARA), an organization promoting rail access to airports, and the Airport Regions Conference (ARC), an association of regional and local authorities across Europe with an international airport situated within or near its territory, have partnered to bring the 8th Global AirRail Conference and Awards to Brussels on 13-14th November 2017.

The annual Global AirRail Conference and Awards brings air-rail professionals from all over the world to discuss the passenger intermodality segment between air and rail including the physical infrastructure integration, innovations in travel booking and planning, and improving passenger experience.

“I am very happy to announce the partnership with ARC as the association brings together a wide range of expertise from air transport as well as local and regional governments,” Director of GARA Milda Manomaityte said.

“At this year’s event, I would like to focus the debate on the challenges the local and national governments will be facing with the arrival of new mobility services, implementing new legislations and working with airports to ensure seamless integration of different transportation modes to improve employee access and passenger experience.”

“I am particularly interested to hear the discussions on how this will impact rail access to airports, what measures rail operators will have to take to compete with new mobility providers and what partnerships can be formed to stimulate business growth,” Milda added.

Each year ARC explors two or three specific topics, ranging from training and employment gaps, to ultrafine particles, territorial marketing, or the noise issues. However, surface access to airports has been a constant concern for local and regional authorities and this year ARC is dedicating the discussions to airport access issues, focusing on economic, social and environmental impacts on airport regions.

“I am happy to welcome the global air-rail community to Brussels and look forward to creating links with the local and regional policy makers,” Secretary General for the Airport Regions Conference, Léa Bodossian said.

The Global AirRail Conference sessions will look at best practices in planning, building and operating rail links to airports, best marketing campaigns to ensure growth, innovations in customer experience at airports and air-rail links, as well as funding, policy and stakeholder engagement challenges.

The event will also host the annual Global AirRail Awards, recognizing the effort, best practices and results of the global air-rail community. The entries for the awards will open on 1st of June 2017 and close on 1st of October 2017. The winners will be announced during the awards ceremony in Brussels on 14th of November 2017.

Posted on in Members' News

UK: The launch of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays at Stansted Airport means that Stansted Express customers can now enjoy even greater choice and value with 21 destinations on offer.

To mark the launch, the Jet2 team greeted rail passengers arriving at Stansted Airport rail station on 30th March with giveaways such as beach balls, sunglasses, Frisbee, lip balms, a mini brochure and £60 ‘Rain Cheque’ voucher to promote the new holiday opportunities.

London Stansted Airport becomes Jet2.com and Jet2holidays’ ninth UK airport base and their first in the South of England. They will offer 21 European leisure destinations, which are on sale now – Lanzarote, Malaga, Alicante, Dubrovnik, Faro, Madeira, Fuerteventura, Girona, Crete (Heraklion), Ibiza, Kos, Larnaca, Gran Canaria, Menorca, Paphos, Majorca, Pula, Reus, Rhodes, Tenerife and Zante – giving holidaymakers across North & East London and the East of England more choice and value.

The first flights from London Stansted Airport took off on Thursday 30 March 2017 to Alicante, Faro, Majorca and Lanzarote.

Stansted Express’s Head of Commercial Development, Eleni Jordan, commented, “We look forward to welcoming Jet2.com and Jet2holidays passengers onto our services and look forward to working with Jet2 over the coming months to provide a seamless journey for our passengers from train to plane. As the fastest and most comfortable way to travel to and from the airport, with trains every 15 minutes and low advance fares from just £7 one way, recent official figures have shown that the Stansted Express is the most popular form of transport, above the coach or car.”

Stansted Express as the fastest gateway to Stansted Airport, fares now start from just £7 per person each way when booked in advance or when four people make a return journey together. Standard single fares are now only £16.60, or £28 return between London Liverpool Street and Stansted Airport.

The new fares put Stansted Express amongst the cheapest Stansted airport transport providers, while retaining a high quality service which includes fully flexible travel on any train on date of travel (and return tickets are valid for up to one month), no hidden fees, unlimited baggage allowance and free wifi.

Trains run every 15 minutes providing the fastest link between central London (47 minutes), Tottenham Hale (36 minutes) and Stansted Airport and the train station at the airport is directly under the airport terminal, just a 2-minute walk to check-in.

Best prices are always online at www.stanstedexpress.com, where there are a range of other services available such as discounted hotels, theatre and attractions booking service, for added convenience and value.

Commenting on Jet2’s launch at the airport, Steve Heapy, CEO of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays said yesterday: “We have got off to a flying start in every sense at London Stansted Airport. Customers in the region have been hearing all about Jet2.com and Jet2holidays’ family friendly ethos, great value package holidays and award-winning customer service, and today they finally get to experience all of that.”

Posted on in Events News

GERMANY: Amadeus and Distribusion Technologies signed a partnership agreement, bringing over 300 airport bus transfer and intercity bus operators in 2,500 destinations to Amadeus travel seller network.

A single gateway to all this content means travel sellers can easily broaden their offer, attract new types of customers and drive revenues, all while forgetting about costly one-to-one setup and commercial relationships.

amadeus distribusion web

With content, search, booking, payment, ticketing and settlement capabilities covered, travel agencies can focus on adapting this new offer to travellers, and in turn, bus companies will be more visible to new customers in new channels, ultimately driving sales growth. Initially, Amadeus travel sellers in central, eastern and southern Europe will be able to access Distribusion bus content with more across the world expected to join soon.

Nearly one billion passengers per year use scheduled ground transport to get to and from the airport – made up primarily by 430 million passengers in Europe and 504 million in Asia-Pacific.

According to Distribusion, most of these bookings are made independently from the flight, directly with the bus and rail transport provider, which adds a layer of inconvenience for passengers when planning their journey.

“Travelling by bus is an attractive choice for many, but could be for many more. Bus operators now have a complete package to unlock growth and make a significant footprint in the global travel industry. Our two partnerships with Distribusion could not come at a better moment, when new entrants and market dynamics are pushing towards improving the overall offer and experience” said Antoine de Kerviler, Head of Rail & Ground Travel at Amadeus. “Imagine booking a convenient airport bus transfer on top of your flight and a weekend getaway by rail – all on the same itinerary through your travel retailer – this is door-to-door travel at its best.”

Julian Hauck, Founder & CEO of Distribusion said: “travel sellers are paying more attention to bus travel to continue enriching their offer to travellers, and have been longing to add this kind of content in a simple, standardised and effective way for some time. The combination of our market leading bus content with Amadeus’ travel seller network will open the door to new travellers. We’re really looking forward to this new phase with Amadeus.”

Distribusion is the leading global distributor (GDS) for airport transfer and intercity bus rides, enabling travel retailers to connect with airport transfer and bus operators worldwide. The portfolio of 4 million bus rides of 300+ operators to 2,500+ destinations and 200+ airports make Distribusion the market leader in Europe.

Distribusion will take part in the Airport Access Ideas Forum, taking place in London on 7th of June, discussing why bus transfer is relevant for airport passengers, and what technical barriers & challenges exist today to link bus with air travel.

Airport Ground Access Conference banner2000

 

Posted on in Events News

USA: The ground transportation booking platform Mozio Inc. and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA have launched a partnership to bring mobile ticketing to SEPTA’s Airport Line. From now on, people traveling between the Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) and City Centre will be able to purchase SEPTA Airport Line tickets anytime, anywhere, from the convenience of their mobile devices. During the six-month pilot program, the app will also allow users to book Lyft, local taxi and sedan rides on Mozio’s multimodal platform, with plans to add additional ground transportation providers over the course of the summer and into the fall. The partnership breaks ground for both organizations, as the debut of mobile ticketing on SEPTA and the launch of Mozio’s mobile compliment to its online platform.

To get started, travellers download the Mozio app, create a free account, and search for transportation options between PHL and their destination. For searches within a 15 minute walk of SEPTA’s five Center City Regional Rail Stations, the SEPTA Airport Line will be prominently displayed as an efficient and economical means of travel. Electronic tickets are stored in the Mozio app and visually validated by conductors onboard. SEPTA Airport Line customers will gain the flexibility to buy tickets months ahead of time or while standing on the station platform, while eliminating the need to carry cash or keep track of a paper ticket. The app is currently available on iOS with plans to launch on Android later this year.

Mozio App

“We are thrilled to be working with SEPTA and launching our multimodal app in the economic and cultural hub that is Philadelphia,” said Mozio CEO David Litwak. “Cities can be stressful to navigate, particularly for visitors and individuals unfamiliar with the ground transit options available to them. Our platform seeks to provide anxiety-free travel, allowing individuals to compare, contrast, and ultimately book the modes of transit that best suit their needs.”

The Mozio and SEPTA partnership will bring a variety of benefits to both parties. By adding the Airport Line to Mozio’s platform, SEPTA will gain visibility – including international exposure – to a large number of the 30+ million visitors that will travel to Philadelphia this year for work, vacation, the NFL draft, college graduations, 4th of July Festivities, and more. Mozio currently works with leading corporate and leisure travel entities including Booking.com, Kayak, Skyscanner, hotels, airlines, and travel management companies.

Launching a multimodal booking app is a natural extension of Mozio’s existing portfolio, and Philadelphia is an excellent testbed for understanding how public transit can serve air travelers. “Having spent the last five years aggregating 3,000 ground transportation providers in over 2,500 cities onto a single platform, we are well-positioned to launch the world’s first scalable mobility as a service solution,” added John McGinty who directs public transit partnerships and is managing the Philadelphia pilot. “Our goal is for individuals to be able to book convenient, reliable, and affordable ground transportation around the world, on a familiar platform in the language and currency they are most comfortable with.” The customer feedback and data Mozio collects during the pilot will help inform enhanced functionality the company seeks to rollout in the near future, including the ability for customers to stitch together rides, seamlessly booking a bike to a metro, train to a cab, and more with a single transaction.

Mozio will take part in the Airport Access Ideas Forum, taking place in London on 7th of June, with the presentation "3,000 Providers and Counting: Lessons Learned Building a Global Multimodal Transit Platform"

The Mozio app is now available for download. Individuals can download the mobile app by visiting http://try.mozio.com/mobile/ or by searching for “Mozio” on the iOS App Store.

For more information about Mozio, visit https://www.mozio.com/ or email John McGinty at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For more information about Mozio and SEPTA’s partnership, please visit http://www.septa.org/mozio/pilot.html.

Airport Ground Access Conference banner2000

Posted on in News

UK: Train travellers are snapping up new mobile-friendly eTickets, with more than one million sold in the first six months, Rail Delivery Group (RDG) announced.

eTickets can be stored on a smartphone or mobile device and used through the train company app, in Apple Wallet and by email.

Virgin Trains West Coast, in partnership with Trainline, were the first to offer eTickets in August last year. Gatwick Express and TransPennine Express followed suit and Caledonian Sleeper will offer eTickets soon. In the six months since launching over 1.4million eTickets have been sold.

eTicket return

Latest figures from the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), which represents train companies, show that 85% of tickets sold online by Gatwick Express are eTickets. Virgin Trains West Coast reports that almost half (47%) of those customers presented with the option to purchase eTickets over paper options choose to do so. Research by online ticket retailer Trainline, who sell Virgin West Coast eTickets, show that four in five customers (82%) rated using eTickets as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ and that almost nine in ten (89%) would buy one again.

The eTicket design was collaboratively developed by the train companies, RDG and two of the industry’s technology suppliers – Trainline and Assertis. The eTicket design and format will be developed further to cover a wider range of ticket types and fares and to include clearer, simpler information for passengers.

The RDG is working with train companies to enable passengers across the country to use smartphones as tickets by 2018. Train companies have pioneered different types of mobile-friendly electronic tickets including the current m-Ticket on services operated by Chiltern Railways, CrossCountry, Great Western Railway, Greater Anglia, Northern, London Midland, ScotRail, TransPennine Express and Virgin Trains East and West Coast.

Dennis Rocks, RDG Managing Director of Technology Services, said:

“The railway must move with the times. All train companies are improving and modernising how they sell tickets, developing mobile-friendly, smarter types of electronic tickets to make it quicker and easier for people to pay to travel by train.

“It’s great to see 1.4 million eTickets sold in just six months. More and more train travellers are discovering the benefits of being able to buy tickets online and download them to a smartphone or other device rather than having to rely on the old orange paper type.”

Angie Doll, Gatwick Express Passenger Services Director, said:

“With these online eTickets passengers really can glide to Gatwick. They feature a 10% discount and we’re selling 65,000 a month. They’re brilliant for the very large number of people making simple journeys to and from the airport – a logical and positive innovation that moves us from the antiquated era of the orange paper ticket to the modern systems used by airlines across the world.

“Passengers have the immediate reassurance of seeing the ticket on their phone or device the moment they have bought it. They don’t have to queue to collect it from a machine when they arrive at the airport – indeed eTickets and the roll out of Oyster and Contactless at Gatwick have slashed queues at the airport.”

Alistair Lees, Managing Director of Assertis, said:

“eTickets enable customers to get their tickets immediately, without the need to download an app, and to use either their smartphone or an A4 print-out to travel – whichever they find easiest. We are pleased to have been able to work collaboratively with train companies and other suppliers to take this from an idea to a successful roll out in such a short space of time, and are looking forward to helping roll it out nationally.”

Posted on in News

NEW ZEALAND: The NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport boards have come to an important agreement on the next steps for mass transit in Auckland.

Both boards have agreed that there will be a staged, integrated transition from bus to light rail transit from the Airport to the city centre, based on future demand and capacity, and to commence route protection for this important gateway corridor between two of Auckland’s key growing employment areas.

Further work will be done to assess key operational elements, required trade-offs, flow on effects, transition impacts and network resilience issues.

The NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport will work together with Auckland Council to determine an integrated approach that enables a progression from the current bus services and bus lanes, to improved bus services in the short-term. This will potentially be followed by higher capacity buses and a dedicated bus mass transit right of way, before a transition to light rail transit could occur.

The timing for this transition will be based on demand, capacity and funding.

The most recent Advanced Bus Solution study commissioned by the NZ Transport Agency is a useful input into existing data and builds on previous studies such as the Central Access Plan, the South-Western Multi-modal Airport Rapid Transit Study and the Auckland Transport Alignment Project, with Auckland Council.

“We are collaborating to ensure that transport works for Aucklanders, businesses and visitors, and that it also delivers value for money. Further work will be undertaken to identify how, over time, a transition from the current bus services and bus lanes to higher capacity mass transit and a dedicated mass transit right of way could occur,” Transport Agency Auckland Regional Director Ernst Zöllner said.

“We have also taken immediate measures in the 2015-2018 National Land Transport Programme to deliver improved public transport solutions around the greater Airport area, which supports a package of short term improvements being developed to address urgent access issues.”

Auckland Transport Chief Executive David Warburton said:

“This is a positive and constructive next step in bringing the Auckland Transport Alignment Project to life. The parties involved are now in agreement that urgent action needs to be taken and we will commence route protection for mass transit.”

“The agencies have agreed and confirmed through various studies that Dominion Rd is the preferred route and we all acknowledge not only the importance of the Airport Precinct and the city centre, but the public transport access and connectivity that is needed along the route.

“Any transition plan needs to consider the lead time required for transition steps such as construction timeframes, and the continued operation of the network in delivering the best value for money option."

In parallel, work will be undertaken to progress route protection of the south-eastern connection from the Airport to Manukau City Centre and east to Botany to ensure good connections to the Airport and its surrounding employment zones.

The NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport will also continue to work with Auckland Council and Auckland International Airport Limited to jointly develop and implement a package of short term access improvements to the Airport.