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Metrolink rolls out ticketing app for rail trips

FILE: Riders can now purchase Metrolink train tickets using an app on their smart phones.
FILE: Riders can now purchase Metrolink train tickets using an app on their smart phones.
File photo by Sharon McNary/KPCC

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Need to buy a train ticket from Los Angeles to Ventura, but don’t want to bother with paper or cash? There’s an app for that. 

You can finally use your Android or Apple smart phone to purchase tickets for Metrolink and use the screen display as your proof of purchase.

The rail agency launched its ticketing app this week after a successful pilot on the Orange County Inland Empire Line.

During that test month, the app was downloaded 9,000 times and used to buy about 5,000 tickets. The app is available for free on Google Play and in the iTunes App Store.

Users can buy one-way, round trip or week and weekend passes, then have them scanned by conductors on the train.

But app-purchased tickets can’t yet be used for free transfers to Los Angeles Metro trains and buses; you still need a paper ticket for that.

Officials hope to install the barcode scanners that will read the digital tickets at Metro gates by this fall.