Kenyan travel firm unveil smart ticketing system in Uganda

BuuPass directors Ms Sonia Kabra and Mr Wyclife Omondi.

What you need to know:

  • First launched in Kenya, BuuPass comprises a team of experts led by Ms Sonia Kabra and Mr Wyclife Omondi

Travelers now have more reason to smile as they get to pre-book rides, purchase tickets, and access real-time information to plan their movements, thereby avoiding long queues at ticket counters.
The travellers are able to do this courtesy of BuuPass, Kenya’s largest bus, train and flight booking online business.
“BuuPass is one major player rapidly innovating road transportation in Africa by creating the balance between affordability and technology. Seeing the outlook and use cases of smart ticketing systems globally and how promising they could mean for logistics within Africa, the BuuPass team has created a system that balances affordability and efficiency,”says Wycliffe Omondi, co-founder, BuuPass.
First launched in Kenya, BuuPass comprises a team of experts led by Ms Sonia Kabra and Mr Wyclife Omondi.
The two are working towards actualising its value proposition – hassle-free travel experiences in Africa. 
The company was built upon the background that time is more valuable and the need to get to destinations as quickly and safely as possible is a necessity. 
Its system is designed to cancel out frustrating booking processes and hitch-ridden journeys.

“We make journeys seamless by making travelling by road in Africa faster, easier and more affordable. Since our inception in 2016, we’ve garnered over 2.5 million customers, using its 1250+ buses,” said Ms Kabra.
“Across Kenya and Uganda where we currently operate, BuuPass has covered over 800 routes, sold more than nine million tickets and presently processes about 12,000 transactions per day. Our impact and solutions have been recognised by the African Union, World Bank, USAID, and other organisations,” she says.
With an ever-growing population and an ever-evolving transportation network, African megalopolises are becoming increasingly reliant on efficient ticketing systems to facilitate their day-to-day commute, and guarantee safe, accessible, and affordable logistics for businesses and individuals.
Road transportation remains the most pervasive means of transporting goods and people across the African continent, making it a key driver of economic growth and intra-African trade activities.

Yet, certain inadequacies limit road transport from reaching its potential.
First, good road infrastructures need to be developed at a matching pace with Africa's rapid population explosion. Second, for players like BuuPass aiming to defy the odds by leveraging technology, slow adoption due to low disposable income across major cities inhibits mass scale, slackens the progress of road ticketing and leaves passengers, who often have to queue for hours to get rides, more frustrated.
Over the years, the global smart ticketing market size has witnessed astronomical growth.
Fortune Business Insights estimates the market size to be $7.27 billion in 2020 and anticipates growth to $21.33 billion by 2028 at a CAGR of 14.5% between 2021 and 2028.
This marks a considerable increase from the $8.29 billion projected for 2021.
Through its online platform, users get to pre-book rides, purchase tickets, and access real-time information to plan their movements, thereby avoiding long queues at ticket counters.

Besides passengers, BuuPass also caters to operators within the value chain through its Bus Management System (BMS). BMS offers a comprehensive solution that optimizes operations, inventory and sales for operators running fleets across several cities. 
Operators are also connected to a marketplace, where passengers can easily find, assess and reserve their tickets through multiple channels, including websites, apps and USSD codes. 
Besides these, the BMS provides a Point-of-Sale solution to record transactions and access parcel management modules.

“The challenge of road ticketing in Africa goes beyond just access. Fraud is a major concern, with ticket scalpers and other nefarious actors taking advantage of the lack of secure ticketing systems, often to the detriment of travellers. We implement advanced security measures such as biometric identification, facial recognition, and a secure payment system to combat this problem. This has helped to reduce fraud and make the road ticketing process more secure and reliable for our users,” Mr Omondi emphasises.
BuuPass rejects analytics generated on past ticketing activities to study the performance of its road ticketing platform, eliminate redundant processes, upgrade existing or introduce new features, identify areas of improvement and overall measure the success of its current systems.
The team believes a well-implemented road ticketing system reduces congestion on the roads and saves energy consumption thereby lowering transport costs, promotes healthy rivalry among businesses that rely on cost-effective transportation and consequently improves citizens` quality of life.
By providing low-budget yet efficient solutions, BuuPass is leading the way in making
travelling by road in Africa worthy of emulation. Through its commitment to innovative technology and customer support, BuuPass is determined to revolutionise the industry and make travelling by road in Africa smoother and easier than ever before.
Last month, BuuPass` B2B2C full-stack marketplace for the public transport sector raised
$1.3 million in pre-seed funding from Founders Factory Africa, FrontEnd Ventures, and Google Black Founders Fund, among other investors. The company’s total funding now stands at $2.5 million.