Warsaw public transport consistently modernised


  • Updated26 May 2011
  • News

“I am glad to say, that the public transport system in Warsaw is consistently modernised,” says Leszek Ruta, Director of ZTM, the Warsaw Public Transport Authority.

A city payment card and internet-purchased tickets are the paramount innovations ZTM has introduced in 2010. More and more tickets are also bought via cell phones, and the number of ticket vending machines in the streets and on board the vehicles is constantly growing.

First in Poland and Europe
Warsaw is the first city in Poland to issue a City Payment Card. The option to encode personal long-term tickets on a payment card issued by the City Handlowy Bank was made available to the customers in October 2010. The introduction of this service has significantly increased the number of places, where one can get personalised pass for public transport system “off-the-shelf”. At the Central European Electronic Cards Conference, the card issued by ZTM and Citi Handlowy Bank was awarded the title of the most innovative payment card in Poland in 2010.

Fast and comfortable
Currently, paying fares for passengers of public transport in Warsaw is quick and easy:

  • The e-WKM service enables passengers to purchase ZTM passes without leaving home, with the use of the so-called instant transfers or card payments. Internet sales via ztm.waw.pl/ewkm started last June 2010. The service is available to the owners of the personalised Warsaw City Pass (Warszawska Karta Miejska) or the Electronic Student Identity Cards. Over 1.2 million passengers use personalised passes now.
  • Internet sales are protected with the use of the THAWTE and SSL security certificates. Purchased tickets can be encoded in one of the 50 special encoding machines located in each underground railway station, as well as in ZTM Passenger Service Points. A passenger needs only to remember to activate the ticket before his first travel.
  • in the metro station gate or in a ticket validator. More than 5 thousand tickets were purchased over the internet by
    mid-March this year.

e-tickets growing in popularity

  • Paying the public transport fares with a cell phone is getting more and more popular. Passengers buy over 20 thousand electronic tickets each month. They can choose from two services. 401.5 thousand transactions were made via the mPay system from December 2008 through mid-March 2011. 3.2 thousand travellers used the new SkyCash service available since February 14th, 2011.
  • The customers of all mobile networks can use the mPay service, and the offer includes time-limited tickets: 20-, 40-, 60- and 90- minute, as well as 1-, 3- and 7-day passes. The SkyCash service requires a phone with internet access and offers the time-limited tickets only.

Ticket vending machines not only in the street

Ticket vending machines mounted in vehicles are becoming a permanent piece of equipment in the capital public transport fleet.

Their installation is required in the call for tender for transportation services. There are over 120 buses with on-board ticket vending machines in the streets of Warsaw. Travellers will also find them in the 13 new SKM trains purchased to service the lines from the Chopin Airport in Ok´cie, as well as in all the 186 ‘Swing’ trams ordered by Tramwaje Warszawskie (Warsaw Tramway company).

They sell single, time-limited, short-term and long-term tickets. The machines accept coins and give change. The number of stationary vending machines keeps growing – there are over 230 of them in Warsaw. They are installed in underground and in regular railway stations, at the main transfer nodes and crossroads, as well as in suburban municipalities.

Better information

Passenger information has also improved. The web-page of ZTM offers two journey planners: Jakdojad´.pl (“How do I get there”) and HAFAS (tested under the CAPRICE project). Timetables on bus stops are plainer now, and dynamic displays inside the vehicle show the bus route.

ZTM cares about precise passenger information. In the new draft timetables for the bus service, which relate to the trams’ timetables, the first column gives the travel time (in
minutes) from the stop to the following ones along the route, as well as the travel time to the current stop from preceding ones, beginning with the terminus.


Electronic displays inside the vehicle have become a standard piece of equipment in the new public transport buses and trams. The dynamic display located by the middle door shows the route; the part already travelled shows grey. Outside displays give even more information (about the terminus, the bus going to the depot, or changes in the route).

A light version of the ZTM web-page, adapted to cell phones requirements, has also been put up. It allows to check the timetable within seconds. The Public Transport Authority in Warsaw consistently develops a modern and safe transportation
network. Its goal is to create an integrated and passenger-friendly public transport system.

For more information: www.ztm.waw.pl