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  • TCF

    The TCF was established by Smartex in 1997 at the request of the UK Department for Transport (DfT). It is a membership-based association open to all who are involved professionally with transport applications of smart cards and other smart customer media within the UK. The TCF is a forum where members and delegates from the public and private sector meet for discussion and mutual education relating to smart ticketing, smart payment, journey management and reporting, and to the underlying technologies supporting such applications.

    Originally established to assist in enabling the implementation of integrated transport policies as set out in the 1998 UK government Integrated Transport White Paper, its role has been updated and strengthened with the publishing in 2009 of a specific government strategy for smart and integrated ticketing on public transport in England. There have been parallel developments in Wales and Scotland. The TCF meets in plenary sessions 4 times per year. Much of its work is carried out in Working Groups which address issues of the moment and report back to the TCF, often with recommendations for the DfT to consider.

    What our members say: “Everyone who’s anyone in the transport industry is a member of The TCF” Mel Pashley, Ecebs “The TCF is uniquely valuable as it delivers instant access to the sector leaders and their wide-ranging knowledge. The Forum is tremendously useful for the DfT as it represents stakeholders in smart cards and in many related areas such as e-payment.” Eric Sampson, formerly Director of Vehicle Telematics, DfT

  • 2019 Meetings


    This Forum meets quarterly.  Meeting subjects are selected by the TCF Steering Group.  Amongst the topics and activities that we are likely to be addressing are:

    • Updates from the DfT and the devolved administrations for current and proposed smart ticketing and payment strategies
    • Establishment of TCF Working Groups for analysis and recommendations on topical issues
    • The continuing development of mobiles for transport applications such as journey planning, ticketing, boarding cards, payment and many other useful applications for travellers
    • The deployment of MaaS and its impact
    • Biometric techniques for public transport applications
    • Account-based ticketing (ABT) and its impact
    • Will the future bring a national account-based central system for transport payments?
    • Monitoring of initiatives and plans for commercial smart ticketing and payment
    • Developing effective Real-Time-Information systems
    • Smart and mobile ticketing and payment on National Rail
    • Exposing relevant technical issues and proposed solutions, for example for bus exit reading & ungated train stations
    • Using tokenisation technology to improve security
    • Pay-As-You-Go in urban areas – multi modal, multi operator, capping
    • Will tickets disappear?
    • Updates on the progress of the ITSO specifications, and of ITSO for Mobiles
    • cEMV contactless card technology and its evolving role in UK public transport
    • Do UK transport operators really want interoperability?
    • The how, where, when, why and what of TfN, and its interaction with other regional schemes
    • Improving the whole-journey experience with smart technology
    • Assessment of winners and losers in the transport contactless payment arena
    • Are beacons or BLE going to happen in transport?
    • QR code deployment is growing, especially in Rail – what is their future role?
    • Case studies from UK LA-controlled and commercial smart transport scheme operators
    • Case studies from overseas smart transport initiatives
    • What do different groups of passengers want?
    • Inclusion of “adjacent modes”: parking, taxi, bike hire, Demand Responsive Transport
    • The impact of good deployment and staff training
    • Commercial exploitation of transport data
    • The ongoing impact of changes in legislation and regulation
    • Ridership trends and strategies/tactics to address
    • The fate of small operators
    • Relevant global macro trends in transport
    • Impact of “disruptive players”: Google, Amazon, Apple…
    • TCF19: Bristol is the location for our annual two-day regional conference & exhibition


    Meeting Agendas and Dates

    • For 2019 meeting dates and agendas please click here.
  • The TCF Virtual Event

    Smarter technologies for transport during and post COVID-19

    Wednesday, 4th November AND Thursday, 5th November 2020





    Wednesday, 4th November

    SESSION 1: Smarter transport operators

    10.30-10.35am: Welcome and introduction – Richard Poynder, Smartex and Simon Ardron, Department for Transport

    10.35-10.50am: How mobile technology can boost passenger confidence in transport safety – Tom Quay, Passenger
    10.50-11.00am: Q&A

    11.00-11.20am: Integrating capacity management during the pandemic & beyond – Chris Thompson, You. Smart. Thing. and David Williams, Transport for Wales
    11.20-11.30am: Q&A

    11.30-11.50am: Regional update – Alison Pilling & Jeremy Acklam, Transport for the North
    11.50-12.00pm: Q&A

    12.00-12.15pm: Midlands-wide travel card plans – Michael Wevill, Transport for West Midlands and Bharat Pathania, Midlands Connect
    12.15-12.30pm: Q&A and General Discussion

    SESSION 2: Innovative products and services in smart transport

    2.00-2.05pm: Welcome and introduction – Richard Poynder, Smartex and Simon Ardron, Department for Transport

    2.05-2.25pm: Getting passengers back on board – Darcy Harmer-Manning, Flowbird Transport Intelligence (TCF20 Overall Event Sponsor)
    2.25-2.35pm: Q&A

    2.35-2.50pm: ITSO on mobile – Michael Moir, Ottanta
    2.50-3.00pm: Q&A

    3.00-3.15pm: Multi-operator, single solution: Making mobile work for all – Carl Partridge, UrbanThings
    3.15-3.25pm: Q&A

    3.25-3.35pm: mango goes mobile: rapid deployment of ABT on mobile – Tom Morgan, trentbarton

    35-3.50pm: BODS, Buses and Butterflies – John Clarfelt, Ticketer
    3.50-4.00pm: Q&A and General Discussion

    Thursday, 5th November

    SESSION 3: Where are we going?

    10.30-10.35am: Welcome and introduction – Richard Poynder, Smartex and Simon Ardron, Department for Transport

    10.35-10.50am: The future of bus travel – Patrick Warner, Brighton & Hove Buses
    10.50-11.00am: Q&A

    11.00-11.20am: The future of rail travel – Chris Perry, KPMG and John Backway, Southeastern Railway
    11.20-11.30am: Q&A

    11.30-11.50am: The future of car travel – Trevor Crotch-Harvey, Fenbrook Consulting and Tom Buck, SWARCO
    11.50-11.55am: Q&A

    11.55-12.15pm: What do customers really want? – Felicity Heathcote-Marcz, Atkins Global
    12.15-12.30pm: Q&A and General Discussion

    SESSION 4: What solutions will service providers offer?

    2.00-2.05pm: Welcome and introduction – Richard Poynder, Smartex

    2.05-2.20pm: Future ticketing trends – Manfred Troll, Scheidt & Bachmann (TCF20 Sponsor)
    2.20-2.25pm: Q&A

    2.25-2.40pm: Accelerating the deployment of ABT on mobile - Paula Dauncey, ACT, a Fujitsu Company (TCF20 Sponsor)

    2.40-2.45pm: Q&A

    2.45-3.00pm: Ticketing solutions for everyone – Minesh Vandra, TransMach Systems (TCF20 Sponsor)
    3.00-3.05pm: Q&A

    3.05-3.20pm: Advice, Assistance and the Authority to Travel - Melvin Mayes, JourneyRight (TCF20 Sponsor)
    3.20-3.25pm: Q&A

    3.25-3.40pm: How biometric identity can support inclusive travel – Simon Binns, FinGo (TCF20 Sponsor)
    3.40-4.00: Q&A and General Discussion


    Thursday, 5th November


    If you have any questions, please contact Annabel Cartwright at or call +44 (0)1440 712610 or +44 (0)7785 254405.

  • TCF News

    Updated on 8th January 2021

    Report: Apple in talks to bring Apple Pay to Paris Metro
    What you need to know. A report says Apple may have reached an agreement with Île-de-France-Mobilités to bring Apple Pay to the Paris Metro.

    Payzone agrees contract with National Express
    Talking Retail: submitted by PZBP
    National Express West Midlands is the leading bus operator in the area, serving more than 1 million passengers each day, and retailers are being encouraged to prepare for a possible increase in demand for ticketing services as restrictions on travel in parts of England is lifted over Christmas. …Simon Lambert, commercial director for Payzone Bill Payments, said: “This is an exciting and innovative new solution which will expand our transport ticketing portfolio in the region, in addition to our current Smartcard offering. National Express operates over 2000 vehicles in the region and we are delighted to be able to offer flexibility to passengers when it comes to purchasing their tickets for any future travel.”

    New mobile payments system launched on buses in Lancaster
    Intelligent Transport
    ... (RRTA), which runs buses in the Pennsylvania city of Lancaster, has unveiled a new, contactless mobile payment option for its customers this week.

    How Contactless Mobile Scanning Restores Passenger Confidence
    A speedy, frictionless and contactless trip through the airport is the key to rebuilding traveler confidence. In the current tough conditions, the appetite for ...

    Cubic and MTA OMNY Rollout Complete Across All 472 New York City Subway Stations
    Cubic Corporation (NYSE:CUB) today announced its Cubic Transportation Systems (CTS) business division and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) has fully deployed the OMNY contactless payment system across all of New York City. Every New York City bus and all 472 subway stations across all five boroughs are now OMNY-enabled.

    Modernising the world's rail networks with IoT and Siemens Mobility
    That's the view of Gerhard Kress, VP, Internet of Things Platform at Siemens Mobility. As a data leader, Kress is driving the deployment of data services ...

    Amazon Hub Lockers for Thameslink and Great Northern Train Passengers
    ... barcode at the locker allowing for contactless pickup. Amazon Hub Lockers are installed at these Thameslink railway stations (with more to follow):-.

    Delivery Manager - Transport - Smart Ticketing
    Computer Futures
    This will be to work on their Smart Ticketing Programme therefore being familiar and proficient with the ITSO. As well as this, you will be working on their ...

    Citi launches contactless Citi Fleet Card in the UK and Europe
    Seeking Alpha
    The solution combines a contactless-enabled card with an award-winning mobile app by The Miles Consultancy and is currently available in 24 ...

    2020 Review: The Transit Industry Rises to the Challenge and Looking Ahead to 2021
    … As we look to 2021, with breakthroughs such as vaccines hopefully signalling a turning of the corner on Covid, we wanted to reflect on the developments agencies we are working with have made during 2020 and the trends we are seeing as they focus on plans to safely bring riders back during 2021.

    IATA unveils key design elements of IATA Travel Pass
    Convenience and biosafety will be enhanced with integration into contactless travel processes. The ICAO CART recommendations for biosafety ...

    The big change coming to the London Underground that could make life very difficult for some
    Buying an individual ticket to go on the Tube in Zone 1 for example costs £4.90 while it costs £2.40 to pay for it on your contactless or Oyster card.

    Las Vegas Transit System Allows Riders to Purchase Contactless Mobile Tickets with Cash
    Masabi PR
    Las Vegas’ transit authority, the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) and Masabi, the company bringing Fare Payments-as-a-Service (FPaaS) to public transit, today announced that riders can now use cash to buy bus passes on the rideRTC mobile ticketing app by depositing funds into their account at nearly 350 convenient locations across Las Vegas, and at thousands of locations throughout Nevada and nationwide.

    Antelop lets banks securely display customers’ digital cards on their mobile phones
    Antelop Solutions has launched a Secure Interface solution that enables banks to provide their customers with the ability to securely display sensitive digital card information on their mobile phones. 

    Facial recognition can help re-start post-pandemic travel. Here's how to limit the risks
    World Economic Forum
    The contactless technology is seen as a key measure being increasingly used by transport companies to address passenger fears about virus ...

    Say hello to tap and go on G:link with Smart Ticketing [Oz]
    You can now trial Smart Ticketing by tapping on and off using a go card, Mastercard or American Express contactless debit or credit card, smartphone or ...

    Interview with Philippe Vappereau, Chairman at Calypso Networks Association
    Rail Professional
    All contactless ticketing requires very fast and secure transactions and during this period we have seen applications put together very quickly using QR ...

    Passenger PR
    UK transport technology company Passenger can now host Automatic Vehicle Location data for Bus Open Data Service through their open data hub.

    Cubic's Smart Ticketing Technology Now Available Across Gold Coast Light Rail [Oz]
    Business Wire
    Cubic's Smart Ticketing Technology Now Available Across Gold Coast Light Rail. Cubic Transportation Systems continues expansion of contactless ...

    Amsterdam buses and trams to get mobile, contactless and QR payments
    NFC World
    Passengers using public transportation in the Dutch capital city of Amsterdam will soon be able to pay their fares using a contactless debit or credit ...

    Mastercard, Transport for NSW to bring contactless payments to transport users in Australia
    The Paypers
    ... develop, and deploy customised prepaid digital payment solutions, delivering contactless tra nsit payments to riders. Transport for NSW customers ...

    DfT director concedes Bus Strategy must halt 'vicious decline'
    Transport Network
    The upcoming National Bus Strategy must reverse the 'vicious circle of decline' that the sector faces, the Department for Transport's director of local transport has said.

    What can transport ticketing learn from the single-source crisis in telecoms?
    CAN via iseepr
    …Philippe Vappereau, the chairman of open-source ticketing standards organisation, CNA, argues that the troubles we are now witnessing in the telecoms world provide yet another demonstration of the crucial importance of open standards and a multisource supply chain – and transport ticketing would do well to take note.

    Daon contactless biometrics partnerships for air travel, credit unions expand
    Biometric Update
    Daon contactless biometrics partnerships for air travel, credit unions expand. Daon COVID authentication app trialed on American Airlines flights to ...

    A Tender Notice by MERSEYTRAVEL
    Single party framework agreement for the provision of smart card media for Merseytravel Commercial C... A Tender Notice by Merseytravel.

    Hong Kong: Octopus adds travel info and P2P NFC transfers to transit wallet
    NFC World
    Octopus transit card holders in Hong Kong can now use their Octopus App to view travel information and transport services “at a glance” and transfer funds from one card to another via NFC.

    The disconnected network: the slow movement of smart cards 

    Transport Network
    Smart cards are still not universally interoperable across the rail network and a limited number of tickets are available in the format, despite a government pledge that they would be by now.

    DfT director concedes Bus Strategy must halt 'vicious decline'
    Transport Network
    The upcoming National Bus Strategy must reverse the 'vicious circle of decline' that the sector faces, the Department for Transport's (DfT) director of local transport has said.

    Tyne and Wear Metro launches mobile ticketing on Android phones
    NFC World
    “The ticket on the handset emulates the ITSO-compatible Nexus smartcard, Pop, and is instantly recognised by the Metro's ticket gates when the ...
    (But not for iPhones…Don’t they have them up there? Ed.)
    …more on this: (Ed.)
    Nexus launch ITSO on Mobile on the Metro
    Tyne and Wear’s passenger transport authority, Nexus is announcing the launch of ITSO on Mobile® across its Metro light railway network. Developed by Yotra, ITSO on Mobile® brings ITSO, the UK’s trusted national smartcard to passengers’ smartphones, using the Google Pay digital wallet platform. Once purchased, a secure ticket is delivered over the air by Yotra’s ticket fulfilment service which is seamlessly integrated with both the operator’s back office and with Google Pay.

    Samsung Pay arrives for public transport users in Ile the France region
    ... transport companies operating in the Paris area and surrounding region. It also enables holders of a Navigo smart card to recharge their pass.

  • Ten Reasons to Join Smartex

      1. How will the explosive growth of IoT affect our market?
      2. Smart cards could soon be superseded by mobiles, but how and when?
      3. Which comms technologies, such as NFC, QR Barcodes, BLE or iBeacons could dominate?
      4. What is the national strategy for commercial public transport payment systems?
      5. How will the new breed of challenger banks impact existing Schemes and banks?
      6. Who will win in the emerging micropayment, e-payment, prepaid and m-payment worlds?
      7. Who will win the m-wallet wars, and is there really a future for m-wallets?
      8. How can we absorb and benefit from the biometrics revolution?
      9. Will fingerprint readers be in the smartphone, in the point-of-service device, or both?
      10. When will smart campus schemes migrate to mobiles and adopt biometrics?


    Smartex Forums debate & seek answers to these and other pressing, highly topical issues.

    Since 1993, over 570 of our sector-specific meetings have attracted over 18,500 delegate-days of attendance, with over 2,150 specialist speakers covering the entire spectrum of smart cards, the smartphone revolution, IoT, biometrics, RFID tags, wearables and related technologies as applied to the main smart market areas.  With so many new technologies, applications and form factors on the near horizon, it’s hard to understand or even imagine our industry without Smartex meetings and networking.

    Several of our Forums have become sector-specific, especially for transport ticketing and payment, for University and College smart campus schemes, and for the FinTech market. The newest Forum, IoTA, addresses the huge emerging opportunities relating to the little-understood Internet of Things.  We constantly modify the scope of our Forums to accommodate the ever-changing smart reality.   

    During 2018, some 550 different individuals attended our meetings, representing nearly 300 organizations.  Worldwide membership, covering our affiliated associations in Asia Pacific and Central Eastern Europe, exceeds 220 companies from all parts of our industry.  Networking, and doing business with fellow members and other delegates, not only in the UK but also through our affiliated Forums overseas, is therefore yet another real benefit of membership.

    Annual membership fees, which have not risen for several years, can be as low as £1,100 - for 4 full-day attendances and a wide range of other useful services - which makes £1,000+ for a one-day public conference look pretty expensive.  Can you afford not to be part of this influential group at the heart of these fast-moving and volatile technologies so vital in the new e- and m-worlds?

    Join Us Now

  • Members' Pages

    Members have access to restricted content.

    To access presentations from past meetings of our forums, click on the links below:



    Smart Payments Forum

    Mobile & Identity Forum

    Internet of Things Association

    International Biometrics Forum - coming soon

    Delegates' Area

    Delegates have access to presentations from the latest Smartex meeting.

    Delegate Presentations

  • January 2019.

    Three WGs have been set up:

    WG27 - Smart Integration for Whole Journeys

    WG28 - Developing a compelling Public Transport journey experience for tomorrow’s generation of travellers

    WG29 - Maximising the Value of PT-Generated Data

    If you are interested in participating in any of these, please contact