Parking in Bonn Municipality to finally install machines with card payment option

Bonn · The city administration recently purchased 70 parking ticket machines that only accepted cash, with the additional option of using a mobile phone app. Transport politicians are now correcting their own vaguely worded decision.

 Until now, you could only pay in cash or with a mobile phone app.

Until now, you could only pay in cash or with a mobile phone app.

Foto: Benjamin Westhoff

The city of Bonn will buy new parking ticket machines that also accept debit and credit cards. The option to pay in cash or by using a mobile phone app will remain. This was decided unanimously by the transport committee at its latest meeting on Thursday evening, following a motion by the coalition in the city council.

This is something local politicians have wanted for a long time. However, an earlier resolution was phrased ambiguously, with the administration interpreting it as an "or" clause and announcing in a press release that they would not pursue the card option. They argued that not many people would choose to pay by card, and in addition, such machines would be subject to vandalism.

The statement now available says that the company has looked into the experience of major cities where card payment is possible, including Cologne, Düsseldorf and Münster. These cities have seen an increase in revenue because of the option. Problems with vandalism played a "subordinate role". As modern machines use contactless payment, vulnerable insertion systems are no longer up to today's standards. Future tenders will therefore have to offer machines where you can pay using a card.

The politicians were particularly upset that the city had purchased 70 machines without card function for the planned introduction of the Nordstadt car park concept this year. The contract was awarded to the company Yunex, from which the city has been ordering machines for a long time, without an invitation to tender. The administration said they had not gone to tender because these machines could be easily integrated into the software used so far, and that the municipality already had 138 of these machines. The Yunex parking payment machines cost 5600 euros gross per unit. There are machines with a card function on the market for this price.

The need for more parking machines is not going to go away: according to the parking concept for the northern part of the city, a consistent parking management is planned for both the western and the southern part of the city. The administration is also working on a similar concept for Bonn-Castell.

(Original text: Philipp Königs/Translation: Jean Lennox)

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