City of Ouargla, ALGERIA


10,000 validations

per day

300,000 validations

per year


The system incorporates the possibility of intermodal management, so that in the near future, interoperability between the bus and tram networks of the region of Ouargla could be deployed.

“Since it has been commissioned, the tramway became a really appreciated way to commute in Ouargla. The successful installation of the ticketing system combined with travel convenience opens new persectives to users, who can now move more easily. Mission accomplished!”

A full ticketing system with tramways and park and ride car parks on the edges of Sahara,

for the first time!


Traffic issues in large cities with high population growth have made it necessary to use new approaches to mobility. The government of Algeria is keenly aware of the issue and has decided to deploy tram systems in the major cities of that country, so that each region is served in an innovative, sustainable and efficient manner.

Ouargla is one of the largest cities in Algeria, located on the edge of the Sahara Desert and was selected because of its strategic and central position in the country as a place of passage.

The dry desert climate in Ouargla is typical of the Sahara, with long hot periods and violent sandstorms. 

Such environmental conditions considerably raise the bar for the installation of complete ticketing systems. The introduction of innovative technology such as contactless passes and sales with bank card payment were key issues for the users in the city.


In 2009, EMA (the metro company in Algiers) chose Alstom Transport for its expertise and know-how. Alstom Transport is responsible for installing all the rolling stock and the equipment for networks and subsystems.

After Oran and Constantine, Ouargla has been successfully supplied with a complete ticketing system by Flowbird. All the equipment was designed and tested to withstand the harsh climate conditions.

To that end, Flowbird made significant technical developments, particularly for the ticket vending machines of the system. These were designed carefully to make them fully sealed against sand and resistant to high temperatures so that nothing would compromise the transactions of travellers.

The ticketing solution allows users to validate tickets using contactless smart cards and magnetic stripe cards.  

The network includes 235 validators for fast validation. It is supplemented by ground validators located at the entries and exits of park and ride car parks

For greater user convenience, tickets are available from vending machines, kiosks and agents

Fare inspectors use Flowbird handheld terminals to make sure the system is being used correctly by travellers. 

In order to offer the most efficient service with the highest quality, traveller data are reported to the central ticketing server, which produces statistical and financial reports to allow the operator to analyse and adjust the service if necessary.


By deploying a ticketing system in a new tramway system, Flowbird has guaranteed ease of payment and use to travellers and a source of revenue for the operator.

The long-standing relationship between Alstom Transport and Flowbird made it possible to extend the partnership between manufacturers for a public transport project on the edge of the Sahara.

Challenges met successfully

  • Combined validation: magnetic and contactless
  • Modernisation of the urban space
  • Compliance with installation and commercial opening lead times
  • Very high machine resistance to climate conditions
  • Field support that was much appreciated by local technical staff
  • Comprehensive monitoring of users’ pass and payment data
  • Good partnership with local companies