San Diego - Convinced by the competitive edge of an account-based fare system

The desire for the latest technology was decisive

Its inhabitants call it "America’s finest City": San Diego, the Southern California metropolis offers a high quality of life. Now public transport is taking a decisive step forward in San Diego as well: the Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) has now contracted with INIT for the delivery of an account-based, open architecture electronic fare system, including the option of operation and maintenance.


bus routes


km² service area


million riders per year


riders per day

Passenger-friendly features

The modern fare system will benefit MTS’ riders by providing passenger-friendly features such as: 


  • Real-time fare purchasing and loading. Whether through website or on their mobile app, value can be added to their accounts in real-time.
  • Best price calculations. Riders just pay as they ride, and the best-possible fare will be deducted from their account. There will be no need to figure out the appropriate fare or buy day passes or monthly passes.
  • A website and mobile app for account manage­ment. Value can be added to the account easily through the web portal. Smartphones can be used for all transactions, from adding value to the account to tapping the phone on validators to ride.
  • Vastly expanded retail network. Hundreds of retail outlets will be able to sell transit cards where riders can also use cash to add value to their accounts.

Fare collection is at the core of our business and purchasing options are more diverse than ever. It’s incumbent that we keep pace with the technology our customers demand. INIT has a track record of success partnering with transit agencies to develop customised next generation fare collection solutions. We look forward to rolling this out in 2021.

Paul Jablonski

Chief Executive Officer

Full freedom of payment options

INIT will also provide more than 100 cash and about 70 cashless Ticket Vending Machines (TVM) VENDstation to facilitate the convenient purchase of tickets and fare media. Ticket office terminals and apps, which act as sales terminals on mobile devices and ensure smooth passenger transport even at major events, will be included in the project to allow MTS to sell fares during large events.

Additionally, INIT will deliver about 900 fare validators PROXmobil for use on MTS buses and at rail station platforms. The validators will accept closed-loop payments such as an MTS-branded smartcard and be capable of accepting open payments such as bank-issued debit/credit cards and mobile wallets using Google Pay, Apple Pay or Samsung Pay.

A region-wide, interoperable fare structure

The core intelligence of MTS’ next generation fare system will be INIT’s fare management and clearing system, MOBILEvario. MOBILEvario utilises an open architecture design to integrate with various third-party vendors for a fully unified system. Due to MOBILEvario’s multi-client capability, MTS will have the ability for a region-wide, interoperable fare structure.

MTS chose INIT because of their goal to implement proven technologies and secure a provider that can ensure a smooth transition to the new system.

Convenient purchase of tickets

  • Closed-loop payments
    MTS branded smartcards
  • Open-loop payments
    Debit/credit cards
    Mobile wallets: Google Pay, Apple Pay or Samsung Pay


Matthias Tanne

Team Manager Sales



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