Are you still walking, or have you started cycling?

Case Study - Contactless Smart Cards

(PresseBox) (Zurich, ) If you want to get around quickly and efficiently in Swiss cities like Lausanne, Vevey, Yverdon or Fribourg, then the hassle of looking for somewhere to park or wearing out the soles of your shoes could soon be a thing of the past. An innovative LEGIC based bike sharing system is taking over Switzerland.

It's no secret that if you're taking short trips in the inner city, the fastest, cheapest and most ecological way to travel is by bike. The Swiss company velopass GmbH has recognised this trend, and is working constantly to set up a national network of bike sharing stations. Based on selfservice, this allows users to borrow bikes in a variety of Swiss towns and hand them back at any velopass destination station they choose, using just one card.

Hiring couldn't be simpler: Users register online, and a few days later receive a contactless LEGIC card by post. From this moment on, all the velopass bikes in all the towns taking part are available for them to hire around the clock. The card serves as a means of identification and as an electronic key to the stations.

As a new LEGIC partner, velopass enjoys the great flexibility offered by the LEGIC advant contactless smart card technology. This enables both the integration of a large variety of different applications and also the extension of existing cards, and adapts flexibly to existing general conditions and technical infrastructures. Thus for example existing city cards, electronic travel cards or student cards for local passenger transport can be extended to include the velopass functionality.

The integration of the identification technology went smoothly together with the Italian LEGIC partner Communicare. They had already introduced the Bicincittà bike sharing system in Italy, which in the meantime is successfully in use in more than 40 towns and communities.

Now Switzerland is following. After the opening of two networks in summer 2009, Lausanne-Morges and Vevey, Fribourg (with citybike and electric bike) and Yverdon joined the velopass'network in 2010. Nearly 400 bikes are now available at a total of 28 stations in 8 cities. The offering is being taken up enthusiastically - especially as the first 30 minutes of every trip are free. The degree of convenience and flexibility which the operators have achieved with their system is unequalled in this sector to date.

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