The transportation sector was one of the first industries to adopt QR codes. Since then, they've been an integral part of the industry. Though initially used for shipping and logistics, QR codes are now used in both public and private transportation.
The relevance of QR codes further increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. As passengers are trying to maintain social distancing, they're using QR codes to book tickets and make payments.
In this post, you'll learn how QR codes have emerged to be one of the most critical elements of modern-day transportation.

QR Codes in Public Transportation
The public transport sector was among the first industries to streamline the use of QR codes. In countries like India, QR codes have been used for years in metro (subway) and public bus services. Here's how QR codes have made public transportation more seamless for both travelers as well as authorities.
1. Easy and Faster Boarding
Some countries have eliminated paper tickets and cash-based transactions. Users can download the public transport app that comes with an in-built wallet. Passengers can add money to the wallet and pay from it at the bus station to generate a digital ticket in the form of a QR code. The bus conductor can then scan the code to verify the ticket and allow the passengers to board the bus.
This process has benefits for both passengers and conductors. Passengers don't need to carry cash, nor do they need to take care of the paper ticket. They get their ticket in the form of a QR code.
The conductors, on the other hand, no longer need to check each ticket manually. They can use a QR code generator with logoto easily generate and verify tickets.

2. Track Transportation Schedules
There's rarely anyone who hasn't missed a bus because of wrong information timing. Most traditional bus stops have printed timetables, and they aren't changed regularly. So, if you rely on them every time, you should be prepared to miss your bus every now and then.
QR codes resolve this hurdle. Countries like Belgium have installed hundreds of dynamic QR codes across each city. Passengers can scan these codes and get real-time information regarding the bus or tram's schedule and running status.

QR Codes for Private Transportation Businesses

Though QR codes were initially used in public transport, they've made their way to the private transport sector. Moreover, the use of QR codes in private transportation has become more prominent than in public transport.
Let's discuss how QR codes are being used in the private transportation sector.

1. Seamless App Installation
On-demand transportation apps are becoming popular. Apps like Uber and Lyft have become the lifeline for daily office commuters.

On-demand transport providers, including cab services and ridesharing services, can use QR codes to encourage app downloads. You can add an app download QR code on your display and banner ads. Customers will, therefore, be able to scan the code and download the app without any hassle.
Since QR code cost is low, companies can integrate them with their ongoing marketing strategy without any major increase in costs.

Connect with Passengers Online

Transportation companies are focusing on enhancing their online presence. Social media has emerged as a platform to interact with customers and notify them about any changes or delays.

For this matter, transportation businesses are displaying QR codes on car windows and seats. Passengers can scan these codes and get directed to the company's social media handles.

Offer Deals to Attract New Customers

On-demand transportation providers can use QR codes to provide discounts and offers. Providing discounted prices to certain locations, especially during the holiday or festive season, is a great way to attract new customers.

You can include a QR code in your banner ads to let your customers know about the latest deals and offers. Also, make sure to add a clear call-to-action, so your customers know what they need to do.

Promote Local Destinations

Add a QR code on your banner ad to promote a local destination. Link the QR code to a video of the local destination. This way, you'll be able to pique interest among travelers.

Don't forget to mention why your customers should travel to the destination using your service. You can provide a discount or offer some additional services to someone who decides to travel to the destination through your transport service.
Promoting local destinations is an excellent way to boost sales. This strategy works wonderfully in touristic cities with high tourist traffic. Travelers are always looking to explore new places cheaply. If you offer them a great place to visit at affordable costs, they're most likely to hop in your car.

Get Feedback and Improve Service

Every transport company has unsatisfied customers. No matter how good your service is, there will always be some unhappy customers. But it's essential to understand what it is that your customers don't like about you.

QR codes help you gather customer feedback. You can put QR codes on your car windows and seats and link them to the feedback page. Your customers will be able to scan the code and share their experiences with you. You can then analyze the responses to improve your service.

Safety During Transportation

Safety during transportation has emerged as a concern in some companies. There have been reports of cab drivers taking suspicious routes or engaging in unscrupulous activities.
To tackle this issue, cab and ridesharing companies put up QR codes inside their vehicles. Passengers can scan the code to fetch details about the driver and the vehicle. The passenger can also scan the code and alert the authorities in case of any misbehavior.

Seamless Vehicle Renting

In several cities worldwide, people can rent vehicles. This is better than ridesharing because people don't have to book a cab every time. They can simply pay the rent in advance and then use the vehicle as their own.

All the leading vehicle renting companies use QR codes to make the renting process easier. Every vehicle has a QR code on it. The passenger can install the bike rental app and locate a nearby bike.

Then, he can go to the bike, scan the QR code, and make the payment. Once the payment is processed, the bike gets unlocked. After using the bike, the passenger can leave the bike at a docking station.

QR Codes for Logistics and Inventory Management

Contactless technology is becoming an essential component of the shipping and logistics industry. For that reason, QR codes have emerged as a lifesaver. In addition to contactless payments, QR codes also enable logistics companies to fulfill last-mile delivery orders on time.

Let's look at how QR codes are being used in logistics and inventory management.

1. Shipping of Goods

Back in the day, the shipping process used to be tedious. There was no automated way to determine the real-time location of the shipment. So, logistics managers had to make frequent calls to get status updates.

QR codes have automated this process.

Now, every package has a QR code attached to it. The code gets scanned at every junction, and the location information gets automatically updated. Hence, managers don't need to call their workers over and over again. They can check the portal to get information about when was the last time the code was scanned and at which location.

2. Inventory Tracking and Management

When QR codes were originally developed in Japan in 1994, their purpose was to track inventory items. And even after almost two decades, inventory tracking remains to be a major application of QR codes.

Earlier, inventory managers had to manually check the inventory items and update the register. This process was not only inefficient and time-consuming but was also prone to human error.

Nowadays, every item has a QR code attached to it. Workers can scan the code and add the products to the inventory. As each item is scanned, it gets updated in the inventory management software.

Therefore, inventory managers can get real-time insights into their inventory without being physically present.

Wrapping Up

COVID-19 doesn't seem to end anytime soon. As a result, people still prefer to stay in their homes instead of stepping out and using public transport. But with contactless technology becoming the new normal, people have started trusting public transport and cab and ridesharing services once again.
Now, passengers can make payments and book tickets by scanning QR codes. This eliminates human contact and makes transportation safer and pandemic-proof.

Author's Bio: 

Apoorva Hegde is a Content Marketer at MobStac.