Passenger Assist App Trial
In March this year, we began an ambitious journey to change the way our customers access assisted travel services.
We've partnered with Transreport to invite passengers to try a new mobile app. The Transreport app has the potential to help us deliver a more streamlined and efficient on-demand passenger assistance service.
To take part in the trial you need:
- A mobile device with an operating system of iOS9 or Android 4.4 or higher.
- To commit to performing at least one return journey a week from a list of trial stations.
- Provide feedback via an online survey before and after the trial.
- Agree to the terms and rules of the trial including respecting confidentiality.
Why is West Midlands Railway taking part?
Demand for passenger assistance is increasing. For passengers, the current process of booking assistance can be time-consuming and inflexible. So we want to discover if the Transreport app can transform the way we deliver passenger assistance, making rail travel more accessible and easier to use.
Scope of the Trial
We have carefully selected the following stations for this initial trial. You can choose to travel on any direct train between any two of these locations. If there is no direct train, then that journey is out of the scope of this trial.
Birmingham Snow Hill
Worcester Foregate Street
We selected a number of stations based on the following criteria.
- Stations with step-free access.
- Staffing hours.
- They are all stations managed by us.
- Stations with direct ‘short hop’ journey opportunities.
- You'll need to download a sign up to the Transreport trial app (we'll give you instructions for this).
- Complete an online survey before and after the trial.
- Perform at least one return journey a week which qualify as a test journey (explained below).
- Rate the experience on the app at the end of each journey and report any feedback via a brief online survey.
To qualify as a test journey that counts in the trial, each journey satisfy both criteria below.
Criteria 1: A direct journey (no connections) that starts at one of the 13 stations and ends at one of the 13 stations
The following journeys, for example, would count as a ‘test journey’
- Worcester Foregate Street to Birmingham Snow Hill
- Droitwich Spa to Kidderminster
- Bletchley to Leighton Buzzard
- Milton Keynes to Northampton
The following would not count as test journeys:
- Worcester Foregate Street to Birmingham New Street because Birmingham New Street is not one our stations.
- Watford to London Euston because London Euston is not one of our stations.
- Birmingham Snow Hill to Northampton (via Birmingham New Street) because it is not a direct journey.
Criteria 2: Arriving and departing at stations during staff hours.
You must make your during staffing hours, which can be found below.
Please book assistance and make your journey in the normal way.
No. We want to test the app’s ability to request assistance and record your location during the journey.
No, only station staff at this stage. This is why it’s important to test the app during station staffing times.
In this initial trial, Transreport have asked us to test ‘on-demand’ (i.e., turn up and go) journeys. So rather than book ahead, please press ‘I need assistance now’ on the app when you arrive. Please arrive at the station at least 15-20 minutes before your train so you are not disappointed or inconvenienced.
- You need to have a mobile phone with an operating system of iOs 9 or Android 4.4 above.
- You need to be comfortable downloading an app and using it on your phone.
- You may need to use some of your personal data allowance to use the app on the go.
- You need to be relatively experienced in travelling by train and, if there was a problem, be comfortable asking someone for help or have someone with you who could do this. We want you to feel safe and comfortable at all times.
- Remember that we do not offer allocated seat reservations.
No. There is no secret in your involvement in the trial – we are testing the app, not the people involved in the process. When you request assistance via the app, a member of the station team will get an alert to assist you.
By agreeing to take part, you understand and agree that we (West Midlands Trains Ltd) may store and process your data as follows:
Your name, address, email, phone number, disclosed access barrier and trial journey information.
In order to coordinate the trial, communicate with you during the trial, check we are being inclusive and testing different access barriers, check we are testing all stations in trial, provide you with a travel pass and notify you of further testing/trial opportunities for this app
For up to 6 months after the end of the initial trial
On our secure servers based in the EEA.
When we analyse the response to the online surveys, your personal data and identity will not be attached to your responses.
Transreport Limited will need to store and process your data in order to facilitate your access to the app for the trial.
Any information you put in your profile, what journeys you do and your app store username (not password).
In order to give you access to the app and for you to be able to use it during the trial
All of your personal data will be deleted the day after the trial ends.
On Transreport’s secure servers in the UK. Transreport confirm that their system is fully compliant with the Data Protection Act (and any successor legislation) and use the latest encryption standards in the app.
We and Transreport will only analyse and share aggregate data with third parties (this means you won’t be identifiable in that data).
We will ask you to confirm your agreement to all terms of the trial (including how your data will be processed) by email before you are sent the app for testing.
In order to take part in the trial you confirm that you will not allow anyone else to use the app or give anyone else your login details. You also confirm that you will not share your views, experiences or any information you receive by taking part with anyone else. This includes the media, other train operating companies and social media.
Yes. If you can commit to making at least one return journey per week we will provide you with a free travel pass travel on West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway services for the trial period. We will also provide a free travel pass for a companion if needed.
Speak to member of the on-train or station teams. We will provide you with an alternative appropriate itinerary and/or a taxi to complete your journey. If this happens, you should abort the trial for this journey.
Report it via a quick online journey survey for Transreport to investigate. Remember, this is the very first trial of the app and things might not always work as expected. We appreciate your patience and willingness to help try the app with us.
We will provide you with a download link once we confirm you as a participant. We will also send you an App help sheet.
Feedback will be via an online survey. We may also invite you to a focus group at the end of the trial. Each week we will contact you to check you are OK and comfortable doing your test journeys.