UK-based rail companies under the Rail Delivery Group are set to introduce a new digital railcard that is expected to facilitate quicker rail journeys and reduce fares.
The digital Railcard, which can be stored as a smartphone app, has been designed in consultation with customers and staff to enhance rail journeys.
The initiative will start with the 16-25 Railcard for younger passengers, followed by the Network Railcard.
Rail Delivery Group Customer Experience managing director Jacqueline Starr said: “Railcards have joined the digital age just like the new generation of young people using the iconic card which started it all, helping to connect the country.
“Railcards save customers cash so they can take more train trips and have more to spend where they go, supporting local communities – and we’re making them easier to buy.”
Four million paper Railcards are in currently in circulation, including 1.6 million 16-25 Railcards.
Since April 1991, 21 million 16-25 Railcards have been sold.
The introduction of the new app is expected to resolve the common problem of commuters forgetting their railcards.
Customers will now be able to add digital Railcards to their smartphones, eliminating the need to wait for a card to arrive in the post.
The digital Railcard can also be swapped to another mobile device quickly and easily during emergencies.
Expected to become available by the end of 2017, the full range of national Railcards can be downloaded by new and existing customers.
In separate news, the UK Department for Transport (DfT) had announced the construction of five new stations across England and Wales.
Involving an investment of nearly £16m, the stations will be built at Horden Peterlee, Warrington West, Reading Green Park, Bow Street and Portway Parkway.