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CIT hosts TAP Retail Common Support Group meeting in Bern

Revision of the TAP TSI core text, proposals on amendments to the technical specifications and Open Sales Distribution Model were some of the highlights of the last TAP Retail Common Support Group (CSG) meeting, which was held on 21 February 2023 at the premises of the CIT General Secretariat in Bern.

Revision of the TAP TSI

In previous years, the involved bodies worked on a revision of the TAP TSI; the outcome of this work was the Recommendation which was submitted by the European Railway Agency (ERA) to the European Commission (EC) in January 2022.

During the TAF/TAP revision process additional topics were identified which remain to be incorporated into the regulation: Temporary Capacity restriction (TCR) – impacting chapter 4 of TAF TSI, Timetable Redesign (TTR) – impacting chapter 4 of TAF TSI and governance / Implementation monitoring – impacting chapter 7 of TSI.

Despite the fact that most of these topics mainly impact TAF TSI, they may also have an impact on TAP TSI. The aim is to amend the existing text of the aforementioned ERA recommendation. In order to prepare amendments to the regulation, ERA called for an additional four TAP/TAF Revision Working parties. It is planned to have the ERA recommendation ready during this year.

Open Sales and Distribution Model

It must be mentioned that the CIT GS is taking part in work relating to the TAP TSI revision both at ERA and sector level. CIT was involved in the work to propose the text on the Open Sales Distribution Model (OSDM) as such, as well as on the standards for exchanging messages relating to claims handling procedures within the OSDM. ERA intents to include technical specifications for OSDM and for the electronic format for claims handling in the TAP TSI revision and in some of its technical documents.

Jan Möllmann (DB), who was chairing the meeting, underlined during the session the importance of the sector-driven solutions in the context of the TAP TSI revision: “The OSDM is a new European-wide industry standard for rail and multimodal ticket sales, reservations, and price distribution, a project which is jointly managed by UIC, railway undertakings, ticket vendors represented by EU Travel Tech and European Travel Agents' and Tour Operators' Associations, as well as IT systems integrators, and which is supported by CIT and CER.”

Further topics

The meeting also addressed other important issues such as the integration of the Inventory of Assets mentioned in the PRM TSI (new technical document B 15), standard numerical coding of locations (technical document B 9), timetable data exchange (technical document B 4), TAP implementing deadlines, and governance of the TAF/TAP regulations.

The revision of TAP TSI is an essential matter for the European railway industry; the CIT GS will therefore actively monitor developments in order to support TAP Retail CSG and its members in this respect.

About the TAP Retail CSG

The TAP Retail Common Support Group (CSG) acts as the umbrella body and partly as the coordinator of the work on TAP TSI ( EU Regulation  No 454/2011, art. dealing with retail and commercial matters. It monitors, and mirrors, TAP TSI activities related to retail. The CSG is a self-organized sector group, a key central driver of the rail sector for TAP TSI issues. The group is hosted at CER and consists of representatives and speakers of relevant sector associations and their respective member railways.  The CSG is the place to share information on TAP TSI, for discussion and development of policies and positions. Furthermore, the CSG is asked to comment and work on issues arising in the context of the TAP TSI Revision giving rise to TAP Change Requests findings and suggestions coming from TAP IRG.

About the group’s Chairman

The chairman of the TAP CSG is Mr Jan Möllmann who currently works at DB, where he deals with EU Transport Policy issues. Jan Möllmann gained his competences, inter alia, in his previous positions in the field of transport, among others as head of EU policy at Arriva Group and in that role also as Chief Lobbyist advocating for the association of European Passenger Transport Operators (EPTO) and also previously as head of the rail bid team of Arriva Deutschland.