How the capital of Bulgaria became the world leader in mobile parking payments

In 2006, the municipality of Sofia, Bulgaria had a big problem with on-street parking payments. The problem was that almost nobody was paying. It's not so much that people didn't want to pay - it's that the payment process was rather off-putting and no-one could be bothered. A year later, with custom software built by A115, the city introduced one of the world's first SMS parking payment solutions. Today, after processing nearly 300 million payments, the system has helped the Sofia parking authority increase revenues by over 250%. More importantly. people love it. The unique simplicity of the new parking payment process has become somewhat of a city symbol.  

 
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In the beginning, there was chaos

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The ultimate in simplicity

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Textbook example

In the years since we first implemented SMS parking payments in Sofia, the model has been adopted in every other major city in the country and has inspired dozens of similar projects around the world. Our original solution has been featured in an EU-funded "Handbook of ICT solutions for improving co-modality in passenger transport", by Edinbourgh Napier University, as an example of a financially sensible technology with high impact factor for public transportation.