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Global digital ticketing transaction volumes to exceed 33 billion in 2023, beating pre-Covid levels

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Global digital ticketing transaction volumes will exceed 33.8 billion in 2023, from just 20.8 billion in 2021; surpassing pre-Covid levels for the first time.

So finds a new study – Digital Ticketing ~ Driving Transit Recovery – from Juniper Research, which suggest this 62% growth will be driven by a resurgence in travel, as well as the recovery in events ticketing.

The research predicts that, while consumer concerns around safety in the post-pandemic environment will persist, adopting digital ticketing solutions, which limit contact and provide information on congestion, can alleviate these concerns.

It found that this appeal will lead to a more digital recovery in ticketing; providing a significant opportunity for digital ticketing vendors.

Metro and bus is digital ticketing’s largest vertical

The new research, Digital Ticketing: Industry Trends, Competitor Leaderboard and Market Forecasts 2021-2026, found that metro and bus ticketing will account for over 33% of digital ticketing transaction volume in 2023; making it the biggest segment, compared with rail, airline and events ticketing.

The report identified the high average number of trips in this segment; making it an ideal option for digital ticketing disruption. While average ticket value in this segment is low, it will seed greater digital use in other segments; driving the whole market forward.

Research co-author Harry Crabtree explains: “As travellers get used to digital ticketing within metro and bus, this provides the opportunity to disrupt further areas, as user familiarity grows. This will allow ticketing vendors to target more lucrative segments.”

Contactless ticketing thriving in recovery

The research found that contactless ticketing is thriving in the pandemic recovery, with over 23% of global digital ticketing transaction volume in 2026 being via this method, compared to only 10% pre‑pandemic in 2019. As many transit operators expanded their contactless roll-outs mid-pandemic, this has accelerated digital ticketing adoption.

The report predicts that as contactless payments accelerate via a permanent shift in consumer behaviour post-pandemic, this will be reflected in the ticketing space, with transit increasingly dominated by contactless ticketing.

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