ADDIS ABABA, Dec. 6 (Xinhua) -- Ethiopia has finalized preparations to commence new technology-supported payment and ticketing services for cross-regional public transit buses within the country.
The e-ticketing service, which is for transit buses to and from different parts of Ethiopia, will start as of December 10, 2016.
The Federal Transport Authority (FTA), inspired by the advancements of the government billing system called "Lehulu", is leading the launch of the new payment and ticketing service powered by Kifya Financial Technology Plc.
Lehulu is a unique and unified utility billing system introduced under a public-private partnership among Kifya, the Ethiopian Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT), the Ethiopian Electric Utility, the Addis Ababa Water and Sewerage Authority, and Ethio Telecom.
The new platform dubbed, "Yene Guzo", which literally means "My Trip", has been developed to make the public cross-regional bus service easier so that customers travel and connect with loved ones at ease.
The new "Yene Guzo" payment instrument has been developed by Kifya Financial Technology Plc in collaboration with the FTA to make cross-regional transit simpler and more convenient through accessible point-of-sale locations.
In a joint press conference on Tuesday here in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, officials from the FTA, Kifya Financial Technology plc, and the Bus Associations, told reporters that the new payment and ticketing service would address the difficulties and inconveniences that customers come across while having the bus services with the current system.
In addition to convenient purchase points, the joint press statement says that the service will allow customers to book and purchase bus tickets weeks in advance of their travel dates, which reduces costs associated with traveling to ticketing areas and eliminates the uncertainty of departing at the desired date and time.
The service, which is to be started with five terminals in Addis Ababa on December 10, will be available in all Lehulu centers in the near future, according to Kassahun Hailemariam, FTA Director General.