Skånetrafiken was formed in 1999 when Skåne became a separate region. The use of public transport in Skåne has more than doubled since then. And the future looks bright: more and more people in Skåne are choosing to leave their cars at home.
“Train travel alone is expected to rise six fold by 2037, the equivalent of 180 million commuter journeys per year compared to 30 million today,” says Peyman Sabet, Sales Manager at Skånetrafiken.
Almost a quarter of a million people commute in Skåne each day. And many of them take the train over Öresund to Denmark and Copenhagen. Others take advantage of the international connections offered by Copenhagen Airport or Landvetter outside Gothenburg. “These commuting opportunities are fairly unique, at least in Scandinavia. We see a major challenge in meeting commuters’ needs and offering them simple and affordable travel,” says Peyman Sabet.
Skånetrafiken’s old payment system was outdated and needed to be replaced. Commuters also requested more solutions for purchasing, topping up and stopping their travel cards.
The Jojo card was launched in August 2009, a contactless smart card with a chip instead of a magnetic stripe. The Jojo card cannot be demagnetised, in other words – but it can be programmed with more services. All Jojo cards have a unique card number and can be linked to a specific user. Customers register under “My pages” on Skånetrafiken’s website. You can also stop your Jojo card if you lose it. The system reads the remaining value of the card when it’s stopped. And customers receive a replacement card with the same value in their letterboxes within a few days.
“Being able to stop cards was one of the biggest requests by our customers, and now they are very happy. That’s actually the reason why we changed our payment system – we wanted to make commuting easier for our customers,” says Peyman Sabet.
By the beginning of 2010, more than 300,000 of Skånetrafiken’s commuters had replaced their old magnetic stripe card with a Jojo card. The card can be bought and topped up in Skånetrafiken’s customer centre or via their website. Commuters can also buy Skånetrafiken’s Summer Card in the same way – a travel card for the warmer months that includes special offers for summer activities around Skåne. Commuters can also buy urban bus tickets with their mobiles.
“This technology has been around for a long time in other parts of the world. In Asia, you can even make small purchases with your mobile. I think we’ll see that here in a few years too,” says Peyman Sabet.
The next step is that commuters can buy Jojo and Summer Cards from Skånetrafiken’s agents: Pressbyrån, 7-Eleven and Coop.
“The idea is that our customers can buy or top up their Jojo cards when they buy a newspaper or do their weekly shopping,” says Peyman Sabet.
A trial is currently underway where new arrivals in Skåne receive a welcome package with a Jojo card, city map and timetables.
“We are constantly working to get drivers out of their cars and on to public transport,” says Peyman Sabet.