Question asked by Brian Hayes (European People's Party, PPE)
Subject: EU travel card
Can the Commission state whether it has any plans to introduce an EU travel card – similar to the London Oyster Card or Dublin Leap Card – which would allow EU citizens to use public transport in any EU Member State?
Answer given by Ms Bulc on behalf of the Commission (26.02.2016)
Within the limit of its reponsibilities and mindful of the principle of subsidiarity, the Commission has already taken a number of initiatives to support the concept of integrated ticketing across the EU.
In June 2014 the Commission published a staff working document "Towards a roadmap for delivering EU-wide multimodal travel information, planning and ticketing services", outlining various barriers and obstacles to overcome in order to make such an integrated information and ticketing system a reality in Europe.
The Commission has followed a two-step approach. The first step is to enable easy planning so that travellers can easily plan their trip within and across Europe. The Commission supports the provision of EU-wide multimodal travel information services in Europe by developing technical specifications to facilitate the access and exchange of multimodal data and services within the framework of the ITS Directive.
The logical subsequent step is to support integrated ticketing. Whereas the main barriers of information are technical in nature, the main challenges associated with integrated ticketing consist of commercial and organisational issues. Integrated ticketing can come in different shapes and forms with new business models and technological solutions. The ultimate take-up of specific solutions will be market-driven. In recent years the Commission has funded several different research activities in the field of integrated ticketing, notably including MobiWallet, European Travellers club, Masai, All Ways Travelling, EUTravel, IT2RAIL and Shift2Rail. The Commission is also closely following other initiatives such as the railway "Full Service Model" and the work of the Smart Ticketing Alliance.