ORR launches market study into ticket vending machines and automatic ticket gates

13 March 2018

In 2016/17 ticket sales through ticket vending machines totalled a value of £2 billion, 20.2% of total passenger revenue, while automatic ticket gates are mainly fitted to prevent fare evasion, which is estimated by train operating companies to cost the industry more than £200million per year.

This study follows ORR work looking into the wider markets for ticketing equipment and systems. In the course of this work, ORR identified concerns that high concentration and a lack of effective competition may be causing higher prices, reductions in quality, and, stifling innovation of ticket vending machines and automatic ticket gates.

In light of these concerns, the market study will focus on three key themes:

  • Concentration and market shares in the ticket vending machine and automatic ticket gate markets
  • Outcomes for customers, both the immediate customers of these products such as Transport for London, train operators, Network Rail, and, passengers.
  • Understanding the reasons why the market works as it does.

Juliet Lazarus, ORR Director of Legal and Competition, said:

"ORR is committed to protecting the interests of rail users. This study will thoroughly review the market to learn whether or not it is providing the best service for those who rely on it.

"We want to hear from individuals and companies about their experiences and we will not hesitate to take appropriate action should the study show that it is necessary."

Views are welcome on any of the issues raised in the Statement of Scope by 5pm on 4 April 2018. Details on how to contribute here.

Notes for editors

  1. The Office of Rail and Road is the UK’s rail regulator and strategic roads monitor for England. Follow us @railandroad
  2. Market studies may lead to a range of outcomes including:
    • Clean bill of health
    • Actions which improve the quality and accessibility of information to consumers
    • Taking consumer or competition law enforcement action
    • Making recommendation to the government to change regulations or public policy
    • Encouraging businesses in the market to self-regulate
    • Making a reference for a more in-depth market investigation
    • Accepting formal undertaking in lieu of a reference
  3. Enquiries should be directed to Simon Belgard (, 020 7282 2094)