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Approaching a collective responsibility for public transportation improvements by paying the right fare

MA 2024
Public Sector, Transportation, Behavioral Change, Crime, Social, Justice

"Fare by All, for All" tackles the issue of fare evasion in London, which significantly affects Transport for London (TfL) by leading to considerable revenue losses each year and the safety of staff and passengers. This in turn has a major effect on TfL's future developments and also law-abiding passengers. Our project proposes encouraging witnesses to participate in combating

By informing the public about how fare dodging harms the entire transportation system, we aim to foster a sense of collective responsibility. Additionally, involving the community in reporting fare evaders helps create a fairer and more sustainable transportation network. Through these efforts, we strive to ensure that the cost of public transit is equitably shared by all users.


Our team engaged in collaborative efforts with various stakeholders to develop a user-centered approach. We collaborated with industry expert Rikesh Shah from Catapult - Connected Places, who provided valuable guidance in shaping our early research and provided with valuable insights to understand the root problems.

We spoke with Data Analysts from Transport for London (TfL) who contributed with crucial insights and highlighted key patterns to consider in our service design.

A significant aspect of our collaboration involved extensive engagement with diverse stakeholders. We conducted interviews with witness passengers to understand their concerns and perspectives on fare evasion. This helped us gain insights into the experiences of law-abiding commuters and their attitudes towards the issue.

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An act of Fare Evasion

A passenger who uses public transit without paying the required fare, possessing the fare media necessary, or valid proof of fare payment.

A crime without a victim!

Fare evasion is a significant issue for public transportation systems, particularly for Transport for London (TfL). For TfL, fare evasion results in substantial revenue losses. This loss directly impacts TfL's ability to invest in and maintain the transport network, affecting service quality and reliability for all passengers.

However, the minority who evade fares unfairly burden these law-abiding passengers and taxpayers, as the costs of fare evasion are ultimately distributed across the system. This not only creates financial strain but also raises ethical concerns about fairness in public transportation. Additionally, fare evasion can lead to increased confrontations between staff and passengers, potentially compromising the safety and well-being of transport workers


We interviewed different stakeholders as part of our secondary research. We spoke to 4 station staff, 2 people from the Data analytics team from TfL and observed 5 underground stations. On the Public side, we had 120+ survey responses on perception towards fare evasion, interviewed 5 fare evaders to understand their intentions and motivations for fare evading, and interviewed more than 10 witnesses to understand their emotions on people who fare evade.

What We Found:

*Survey with 127 participants


Ever seen other people not paying within the last month of traveling


happened in the underground network


feels unfair after seeing fare evasion happen directly by themselves


Based on our secondary research, we can see how the current situation puts fare evaders at the center of the issue. Every effort made is aimed at them. From our insights, we think that witnesses have the potential to make a change and help in reducing dare evasion rates.

Our research also gave us some more pointers on what the general population feels about fare evaders. They not only have some negative feelings towards fare evasion but also show a willingness to participate.

Who is Involved?

Our stakeholder map displays all the users that are crucial to fare evasion from TfL, the Government, and the Public. The focus was based on fare evaders and people involved during the time of evasion. We delved deeper into understanding each of those stakeholder's pain points, concerns and needs.


How might we design an easy and appealing influencing system for the witness passengers so that they can participate in helping reduce fare evasion?

There are 3 essential pillars required to build our solution

  • Awareness of the situation
  • Willingness of people to report
  • Ability to take the necessary measures


The proposed solution/service has a 2 stage approach. which involves:

  • A campaign to raise awareness and foster a sense of community responsibility.
  • Encouraging witness passengers to contribute to report fare evaders and help create a fair environment for everyone.

Our project is currently in the prototype testing and iterating phase, ensuring all the design ideas can solve the problem we bring out. We appreciate your patience and support as we refine the prototype based on feedback.

Stay tuned for updates and the release of the final version, coming soon. Thank you for being part of this journey!


Our heartfelt gratitude to :

  • Rikesh Shah, Head of Innovation Procurement Empowerment Centre at the Connected Place Catapult
  • Jae Sun Park & Lisa Johns, Service Designer, Data & Analytics at Transport for London
  • Said Ali, Bus Operational Manager at the Go-Ahead Bus Group London
  • Noel and the Green Park Underground Station team
  • All the station officers we interviewed and giving us space to observe <3
  • Everyone participating in our surveys! It means a lot!
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