Providing dynamic public transport information

Basic Information




Thematic areas

Smart, Sustainable, Connected and Shared mobility
  • Real-time road-user information


The attractiveness and popularity of public transportation can be improved by providing passengers with reliable real-time information about services.

Implementing sustainable mobility

The provision of updated timetable information via Internet or mobile phone have become increasingly common tools for public transport companies. The Rotterdam Transport Company RET therefore decided to introduce real-time arrival/departure information at 70 tram, bus and metro stops for the convenience of its passengers.


Dynamic public transport information on Rotterdam’s high-quality tramline became operational in October 2002 at 36 stops. RET purchased 60 new trams, which had to be adapted to fit into the system: originally they were not detected by the system, which meant that inaccurate data were displayed on the information panels. Once this problem was solved, RET carried out successful tests between October and December 2002.

In October 2003, RET began a test period for dynamic information at metro stops, and at the beginning of 2004 the system was launched with the installation of 247 panels at all 49 of the city’s metro stations. The panels show the number of minutes passengers have to wait before the next strain, as well as information about delays.

By April 2004, the first 44 on-board communication systems had been installed, and by January 2005, a total of 74 trams had been fitted with the systems.


In spite of a high acceptance level, the impact of the measure on the number of passengers could not be quantified due to a fall in passenger numbers at the time of implementation resulting in part from the introduction of higher tariffs. However, a survey in 2002 indicated that acceptance among users was high. Of the 258 people who responded, 47 percent agreed that information about waiting times is important, and 45 percent agreed that dynamic public transport information increases the use of public transport.


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