The Fifth Element’s Multipass Will Soon Be A Reality For UK Travelers
The Future Is Now!
I need this technology immediately. If only so I have a legitimate reason to go around saying “Multipass” ten times a day.
Believe it or not, a new technology is being developed which would allow travelers to consolidate their important documents. And yes, it’s inspired by Luc Besson’s 1997 film, The Fifth Element and actually called MultiPass.
The Guardian says an industry consortium “which includes players such as train operating company Greater Anglia and the Centre for Transport Studies at Imperial College London,” has received a grant of just around $1 million from the United Kingdom’s Technology Strategy Board to help develop the tech.
“A futuristic all-in-one travel pass that you could use on trains, buses, the tube and even to catch flights, all at the lowest possible price, is the stuff of sci-fi, but will move a step closer to reality when MultiPass is trialled in London and Glasgow next year,” they write. “Those behind it claim it is designed to solve two problems: the need to carry, or buy, lots of different cards and tickets for different journeys, and the challenge of negotiating Britain’s byzantine ticketing systems in order to obtain the cheapest fare. MultiPass could replace a rail season ticket or Oyster card, and you could also use it to pay for car parking and refreshments during the journey. And – because it can display a barcode on its screen – it could even be used for air travel.”
Their hoping the MultiPass will be available in 2015 but will be doing test runs with it throughout the next year. While parts of the UK have been utilizing the “contactless symbol” for easier public transport payment, Jeremy Acklam from MultiPass says their product goes further. He told The Guardian, “Because we are managing all these different tickets ‘up in the cloud’, we can pretty much guarantee to get you the best price. That’s the big attraction.”
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