Most of us are familiar with that twinge of annoyance that zaps our system when we return to our car a few minutes after the meter has expired to find a glaring orange ticket on our windshield, but starting today, Bostonians will have a faster way of paying for the pesky parking citations.
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Boston Mayor Walsh today announced a city partnership with TicketZen, Inc., a company created by Boston-based Terrible Labs,to encourage parking ticket recipients to pay their fines using their smart phones.
For a three month pilot period a reference to the mobile app TicketZen will be featured at the bottom of every computer-generated parking ticket issued by the Boston Transportation Department and will guide those with parking tickets through the new option for making payments.
“[Boston] continues to innovate around customer service,” said Walsh in a press release announcing the partnership. “Implementing new technology that makes the unpleasant chore of paying a parking ticket more efficient and effective, makes life in the city easier. I’m pleased that we were able to partner with a local tech company to get this app done.”
TicketZen, a smart phone app available for both Android and Apple devices, utilizes the smart phone camera to scan the barcode on a parking ticket and connect the user’s payment details with the City of Boston’s payment network.
The app provides a smoother user experience than navigating to the city’s parking ticket payment website from a mobile phone. In addition, by prompting users to make timely payments, it helps them to avoid late fees that are routinely added to the original fine after 21 days.
During the pilot period, the TicketZen service will be provided at no cost to Boston users beyond the standard credit card processing fee associated with the city’s payment portal.
“We are thrilled to partner with Mayor Walsh and Boston’s Transportation Department to ease the process of paying a parking ticket,” said Cort Johnson, Director of Business Development for Terrible Labs. “Boston continues to be a leader through their sustained efforts to modernize the way its residents and visitors interact with the city and TicketZen is excited to be a part of that plan.”