City of Lille, FRANCE


More than 237 million

travellers per year

219 million

validations per year

“As an operator, we want to make it easier to use public transport. With this innovative solution, we have simplified cross-border mobility”


Francine VELTHUIZEN, marketing and sales director of Keolis Lille

A full service ticketing system

making mobility easier with interoperability

For nearly 15 years, Lille’s public transport network had been using a rival system, facing challenges in managing equipment and hitting technological constraints within the existing setup.

Modernisation was a major requirement of the project.


The city also affirmed its dedication to enhancing user services, formalised in two key areas:

  • The new equipment had to satisfy all modern standards by incorporating a wider array of payment methods, user-friendly interfaces, and contactless technology.
  • The emphasis of the project was on intermodality, allowing a unified medium for public transport, park-and-ride facilities, and bike rental stations.

Collaborating with city authorities, a strategy for equipment migration and renewal was established, aiming to minimise user disruption and implement changes, including Ticket Vending Machines and validators, within a set timeframe.

In its pursuit of expanded user services, Lille aimed to establish an interoperable system. This system would enable users from neighbouring towns and regional train commuters to utilise the new card.


Flowbird renewed all the equipment throughout the Lille urban area:

  • 334 Ticket Vending Machines deployed across the city
  • 2187 on-board validators, 148 ground validators, 208 mobile validators and 443 gates validators distributed over the whole system
  • 220 handheld fare inspection terminals for agents.

To expand the vending network and cater to a broader audience, 52 point-of-sale terminals and 273 simplified point-of-sale terminals were positioned in sales offices, agents’ shops, or with authorised resellers.

Residents of Lille now have access to a single contactless pass known as Pass Pass. This pass enables its holders to utilise the entire public transport system within the conurbation, as well as in the entire Nord-Pas-de-Calais region and in Belgium.

Access to park and ride car parks is offered using tickets combining parking and transport. The exit barrier is opened by Axio validators when a transport ticket used during the day is presented. Additionally, Pass Pass cardholders have access to self-service bicycles. For this purpose, 42 specialised validators (located at park-and-ride parks and bicycle stations) have been installed.


Following the successful renewal of the entire system, the city authorities, operator and Flowbird have initiated collaboration on additional joint projects.

The city is implementing gates to enhance safety within metro stations. Flowbird’s solutions are adaptable for future installations, offering support to the city in this endeavour.

Thanks to the integration of Axio validators in the security gates, the city will be able to seamlessly expand the existing ticketing system.

Flowbird validators integrated into the gates will oversee the opening and closing of metro stations.

Utilising the open Flowbird system and its interfaces, the operator and the city of Lille have independently developed NFC mobile phone functionalities, enabling payments on Vending Machines and direct ticket reloading onto the Pass Pass card.


As the first manufacturer to implement such a solution, Flowbird has allowed the people of Lille to use their Pass Pass card outside France. 

In order to make the life of cross-border travellers effortless, the Triangle 2 project has made it possible to extend the network to other countries.


Since July 2023, trials of open payments have been conducted in eight metro stations within the ilévia network, with the following objectives:

  • Evaluate the technical and functional aspects of the system.
  • Assess the appeal of this transport access method for occasional travellers.

The open payment trial serves to gauge the benefits of this type of solution for travellers on a real-world scale and over a substantial duration.

Open Payments allow passengers to use public transport by validating their journey with their contactless payment card, smartphone or connected watch. 

The main objective of Open Payments is to simplify and streamline purchases for passengers, particularly occasional travellers such as tourists during events like the Lille Braderie and the 2023 Rugby World Cup at Stade Pierre-Mauroy.

Since the start of the trial, open payments have significantly eased the use of public transport, meeting travellers’ needs for simplicity and encouraging greater public transport utilisation.

During the Braderie, Lille’s open-loop transit payment system recorded as many ‘taps’ in 48 hours as it had in the entire previous month. The surge in tap-to-ride system usage during this event indicates that visitors from outside the city particularly appreciate this convenient method of boarding without the necessity of comprehending local ticketing and fares.

By eliminating the need to queue for a ticket, the seamless payment experience expedites tourists’ and spectators’ journeys to their destinations.