Southeastern has the ‘Key’ to paperless ticketing

se_keyKent commuters will soon be able to use a new paperless ticket alternative called the Key and marks Southeastern’s first move towards “paperless commuting”. Available initially for weekly, monthly or annual season tickets, the system differs from the familiar Oyster card used across Transport for London’s network.

Unlike Oyster, the Key will not hold funds or credit. Instead, it will store up to five tickets at any one time – each must be bought and loaded separately. A card with a stored ticket will allow commuters to tap through barriers rather than feed a paper ticket through a machine. Tickets are automatically loaded onto The Key by tapping it onto a smart card reader at a station, either on the automatic ticket barriers or on the ticket machine.

Online tickets can be collected two hours after they are bought, while tickets bought from machines will be loaded onto the card immediately. The train company says passengers will be able to check the status of their tickets and journey history in an online account or at any ticket office.

Last month Southeastern managing director David Statham said “From 5 December, our passengers will be able to unlock the benefits of smart, paperless ticketing and speedy, tap-and-go travel. The Key will be easier, quicker, sturdier and more secure.”

Passengers will be able to buy tickets online or from Southeastern ticket vending machines outside London.

“This new smart card is great news for season ticket holders on Southeastern who will no longer have to rely on paper tickets. Monday morning queues to buy tickets before you board will also be a thing of the past. With technology like this new card we are finally bringing rail travel into the 21 century,” commented Rail Minister Paul Maynard.

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Categories: Ticketing

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