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NJ Transit Tests Pilot Program to Speed Up Boardings and Create a Touchless Experience for Mobile App Users at Port Authority Bus Terminal


the staff of the Ridgewood blog

New York NY, Beginning Monday, February 1, NJ TRANSIT will start touchless boarding on outbound bus trips for the Route No. 126 Line departing the Port Authority Bus Terminal (PABT) during the weekday evening peak period of 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

As part of the pilot program, which will assess how the use of technology can be used to speed up boardings, customers will have their tickets and passes scanned before getting on board the bus. Currently, customers are required to have a ticket either in paper or electronic form and they present that to the bus operator who enters it into the onboard farebox.

“Today’s NJ TRANSIT is always looking for new ways to improve the customer experience and make commuting as efficient as possible for our riders,” said NJ TRANSIT President & CEO Kevin Corbett. “That’s exactly what we expect this pilot program to do, using the very same technology – handheld mobile devices – that is currently being deployed throughout our entire rail network. While streamlining the bus boarding process for customers, this technology also improves safety amid the COVID-19 pandemic by further promoting contactless fare collection.”

This new system will have employees near the stairs and escalators in PABT with a handheld scanner, the same technology already being deployed to rail crews. These employees will electronically scan the tickets before customers go up the stairs or escalators where customers will enter a queue. When the bus arrives, customers will be able to simply board the bus and immediately go to their seats reducing boarding times at PABT.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, these handheld scanners will create a touchless experience for mobile app customers. Customers using paper tickets will have their ticket scanned and collected by an employee.

NJ TRANSIT will evaluate data collected on performance and logistics in determining how it can be expanded to other bus lines operating out of the PABT.

Bus Route No. 126 operates between PABT and Hoboken.

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