For millions of people around the world, particularly the elderly and those with physical disabilities, accessing public transport can present a serious challenge. Having handsfree access to public transport, without the need to bring a ticket close to a reader, could mean new levels of freedom and mobility for people who currently have difficulties using public transport.
Even though contactless tickets make it much easier and faster to pass a subway turnstile, board a bus, or ride a train, it still takes time to find and present the ticket. Doing away with the need to physically tap the ticket to a reader would make using public transport much easier, and much more enjoyable, and would help keep things moving during periods of heavy usage. Many public-transport agencies have already replaced traditional ticketing systems, which use cash payments or simple paper tickets, with contactless schemes that involve contactless paper tickets or contactless smartcards based on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID).