In the Fehmarnbelt, local authorities developed a single affordable ticket enabling people to easily cross the strait & use public transportation on each shore
Fehmarnbelt ticket aims to achieve through an affordable cross-border ticket an easy crossing of the strait. Achieving this objective will enhance the sense of belonging to an integrated region among the population on both sides. It will allow citizens in regions Zealand and Holstein to get to know each other and the other country, which should increase the cross-border traffic. Moreover, it also contributes to the direct reduction of CO2 emissions in a region where most people cross the strait with their car. Indeed the ticket proposes an alternative way to cross the strait through public transportation. The change of behaviour of local population in the way they plan their travel leads to the reduction of CO2 emissions. Finally, it is also a step integrated into a global approach to construct a fixed link between Germany and Denmark. Before 2030 a tunnel will connect Region Zealand with Holstein over Fehmarn Belt. Both the sense of belonging and the change in behaviour are needed to increase journeys between the two countries but with limited CO2 impacts.
The stakeholders involved in the creation of the ticket are County of Ostholstein (Germany), Region Zealand and the municipalities Guldborgsund and Lolland (Denmark); a university the Northern Institute of Technology Management; and traffic companies NAH.SH from Schleswig Holstein, Movia from Denmark and the Ferry company Scandlines.
The ticket is designed to benefit local citizens of the cross-border Fehmarnbelt region.
Only 5000€ were officially allocated for marketing the ticket. Nevertheless, important human resources were needed to coordinate the development of the ticket. The support from local municipalities, regions and also from the local public transport companies are essential.
Evidence of success
The ticket has been designed between 2009 and 2012 and was efficiently implemented between 2012 and 2017. During these 5 years, in average 1000 tickets were sold each year.
This practice is considered as good because it is a new cross border product for the public transport system in the Fehmarn Belt Region. People can travel in Denmark and Germany with one ticket and use public transport on both side with no worries in an eco-friendly way.
Difficulty to find the relevant partners, especially in the field of public transport.
Technical issues because of the different timetables, tickets, reading bots and QR codes.
Not enough marketing around the ticket. There is a need to bring touristic organisations on board to improve it.
Potential for learning or transfer
The potential for learning or transfer is important; the ticket concept is easy to transfer to other straits or cross-border regions. Already some partners from PASSAGE project are interested to transfer this good practice.
The ticket is on pause now, because the rail tracks in both Germany and Denmark are been upgraded, it allows the stakeholders to step back and get a clear perspective on its implementation.
The ticket will be introduced again in 2028-2029, when the fixed link is finished; stakeholders are already working on improving the ticket and fixing issues identified.
An aspect that is fundamentally beneficial for this kind of initiative is the cross-border dialogue developed between regions/municipalities and public and private transport companies.
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