The information can be static and/ or real-time that may include transit routes, maps, schedules, fares, park-and ride lots locations, transit trip itineraries and transfers. This information can be accessed by cable televisions, personal computers, hand held devices, calling 511 and electronic kiosks.
Transit Call Centers
Staffed telephone customer service is a foundational, critical component of a transit agency’s customer information strategy. Customer inquiries that are not easily addressed using other media such as printed materials and websites can be effectively handled by phone. Inquiries like planning complex itineraries are cited by transit customers as among their most important information needs. Most transit agencies believe that the majority of their customers prefer and expect live operator customer service. Agencies also perceive that live operator service is particularly important to senior and disabled customers who are not comfortable using the Internet and customers who are not familiar with the transit system. Although many transit agencies are taking increasing advantage of web pages—and, to a lesser extent, interactive voice response (IVR) systems—these tools are viewed by the agencies as complementing, rather than replacing, live operator customer service. Transit agencies value their telephone interactions with customers as an important means of establishing and maintaining their relationships with their customers.
Traveler Information Kiosks
The kiosks pThe kiosks provide personalized transit itineraries including routes, fares, schedules, and origin-to-destination travel times, carpooling possibilities, real-time freeway conditions. The user interface is a touch screen monitor. All the information is displayed in textual form. The strategically placed, free-standing kiosks enable visitors to find their way around the city by using interactive maps to show them where they are and how to get
to their final destination. The software can be designed to provide online information about bus, rail and tram services if available. Talking Kiosks are also available to aid people with visual impairments.
There are also many interactive kiosks which not only provides transit information but also include amenities located. These allow users to virtually explore the city. One such system is available to Amazon.com employees. Now 3d kiosks and gesture recognition kiosks are available for providing information to the users. GestureTek’s Illuminate Kiosk display is an interactive kiosk system that uses patented gesture recognition technology and a motion control interface to give users both point based, touch free computer control and touch screen kiosk interaction.
Internet, text messaging provides users a new way to retrieve transit information. Transit agencies sends text messages regarding the time of arrival of the vehicle to the users registered with them. Some agencies are getting into the social media like twitter, facebook to eventually offer real-time information so riders can track on their smart phones before getting into the vehicle. Transit riders can check the schedules, plan routes and transfers on the transit agency’s website or on Google Maps.