Entering a new era: Cross-border ticketing in public transport between Estonia and Finland

  • 2022-04-25

Tallinn, Tartu, and Helsinki introduce a cross-border system that enables a single public transport ticket purchase in the three cities.

Estonia and Finland have a close connection and economic involvement (for example, labour market and tourism). People travel frequently between the two countries. Over 6 million passengers travel annually between Tallinn and Helsinki. A lot of passengers use public transport regularly. Until now, passengers had to purchase different kinds of tickets from different sales channels.

The three cities have joined forces and found a way to innovate. The Estonian company Ridango is the technology provider for the new cross-border ticketing system that offers passengers the following benefits:

- Travelers from Estonia to Helsinki can use the mobile application Pilet.ee 2020 to buy a single public transport ticket. 

- Helsinki Travel Card (Matkakortti) holders can buy and store Tallinn and Tartu day tickets on their travel card.

- Passengers can view all trip details on the websites pilet.ee and hsl.fi

Let’s reduce car use

“The main goal of developing the cross-border system is to encourage people to use public transport instead of cars while traveling. Buying tickets should be convenient. Making this process as simple as possible will help passengers to make more environmentally friendly choices,” says Tiit Laiksoo, Head of Ticketing Division at Tallinn Transport Department.

“Implementing this project certainly makes using public transport easier for those coming to Helsinki from Estonia and vice versa. In addition to user friendliness it is important to encourage people to make sustainable mobility choices”, says Mari Flink, Director for Sales and Customer Experience at HSL.

“This unique project is a perfect example of making customer needs and seamless user experience a primary priority. The customer-oriented collaboration between the three public transport authorities sets a successful example for the whole industry. It also shows how we can scale the existing ticketing system and use it to create a smooth customer experience,” says Erki Lipre, CEO at Ridango.

“The common ticketing system makes the use of public transport more convenient for Tartu residents in Helsinki and for Finns in Tartu. Thus, we create good preconditions for deciding in favour of an environmentally friendly way of traveling. During the health crisis, the number of passengers has been lower than usual. While in an unrestricted situation, movement between Tartu and Helsinki has been very important for both business and tourist travellers,” says Raimond Tamm, Deputy Mayor of Tartu.

The cross-border ticketing system has been implemented in cooperation between the three cities in the framework of the E-ticketing project co-financed by the European Union through the Interreg Central Baltic Programme.