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Moscow Metro goes digital to refund journeys lost to COVID-19

Posted: 17 June 2020 | | No comments yet

Moscow Metro customers can now claim refunds for unused journeys they otherwise would have taken during the Russian capital’s COVID-19 enforced lockown.

Sign outside a Moscow Metro station

Moscow Metro has added new functionality to its app to allow customers a simple and safe way to claim refunds or replacements for trips they’ve lost due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Moscow Metro announced that all trips that remained unused due to Moscow’s two-month long coronavirus outbreak would be refunded.

The decision to make the refund/replacement scheme digital is to reduce the number of people queuing to enquire about their lost journeys, as the metro is Moscow’s most popular mode of transport with ridership of up to 9 million passengers per day.

“We anticipated a large number of requests for tickets replacement option, and that it might cause queues at Metro’s ticket offices. Bearing that in mind, we’ve added a new function to our Moscow Metro App that allows passengers to claim replacement for their lost trips and to write it back on their “Troika” smart-cards right away. It helped us to keep the process smooth when thousands of people came back to work,” a statement from the Moscow Metro press office explained.

Public transport became accessible to Moscow’s citizens again on 9 June following the lifting of the city’s self-isolation regime. All types of fare payments are once again available on the city’s transport services. 

Moscow Metro has undertaken significant efforts to ensure the safety of passengers following the outbreak of COVID-19 in the Russian capital, increasing daily disinfection routines on more than 900,000m2 of station areas. All passenger zones and ventilation shafts are disinfected regularly with hot air, all metro trains are cleaned and disinfected with UV lamps before running, and all metro tunnels are washed using a strong disinfecting agent. Air filters in metro trains with built-in air conditioning are changed twice as often as usual.

Handrails, turnstiles, entrance door handles and cash zones are disinfected every 1.5-2 hours, and more than 1,600 ticket vending machines are washed hourley. Passengers are recommended to use contactless payment options. Protective masks and gloves can be purchased in stations, with prices fixed lower than the standard market price.

“Public transport operators around the globe have been affected by the pandemic. Daily ridership has decreased dramatically. Now it is very important for transport operators to bring passengers back, but it is impossible to make it without inspiring trust in their reliability. In the Moscow Metro we believe that what we do should make our passengers confident about their security. This, in some cases, can also become an example for international metro community as our colleagues are facing the same challenges,” the Moscow Metro press office added.

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