Sitting on the UK’s M4 corridor, Reading – like many neighbouring towns – has built a reputation as a base for digital innovation. So it’s only natural that it has started to make moves into the contactless world.

The local bus network simplyBus has launched a smart card-based contactless ticketing system in the town and nearby Newbury and Thatcham. The cards – which cover single, daily or weekly rides – can be purchased online or from simplyBus outlets. They can also be topped up at simplyBus locations as well as at 200 PayPoint outlets locally.

UK mobile network operator Orange has already trialed transit ticketing in Reading. Back in 2008, it issued participants with a Sony Ericsson handset which could be used to pay fares on a limited number of buses.  Users could also check their phones for a record of their journeys including the day and time of the trip and how long it took.

And countactless technology may get a look in at major music events such as the Reading Festival. Here, preloaded contactless wristbands are a potential winner, acting both as tickets to gain access the event and as contactless payment devices. Events organizer Festival Republic, which manages the festival, has already successfully introduced the technology at Hove Festival in Norway.

Category Number


Point of sale terminals/readers deployed

1-10 1
Different types of contactless device 2


Number of contactless devices

1001-5000 40
Number of applications 2


Total number of service providers involved

5 5
Number of banks in partnership 0


Number of operators in partnership

1 1
Number of merchant locations 0


Transit operators in scheme

1 1
Parking sector 0



0 0
Entertainment sector – football, leisure, congress etc 0


Public sector activities – libraries, schools etc

0 0
Smart poster environments in place 0


Marketing campaigns rolled out

2 2
Length of time project implemented 13-24 months


ROI – future potential

2 2
Green credentials 101-500


Social equality

0 0




  1. The Reading Festival looks to contactless technology « Contactless & NFC City League - December 9, 2010

    […] here for the League Table on […]

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