Virgin Trains early birds


GoMedia was selected by Virgin Trains to address inefficient boarding at Euston Station.

Virgin Trains has a minimum of nine departures an hour throughout the day from Euston, one of the busiest stations in the UK with over 70 million users per year. Passengers often had to spend their time waiting on the concourse, watching the customer information system (CIS) screens for boarding information to appear. Research by Virgin Trains revealed that some passengers felt anxious about missing their train and would rush toward their platform when boarding information was displayed.

GoMedia addressed this issue by creating a direct line of communication to Virgin Trains’ customers - Earlybird Boarding. The system delivers targeted departure messages to customers’ mobile phones before the general public are notified via the CIS screens.

Virgin Trains’ passengers now receive two SMS messages before they travel. The first reassures passengers that their train is being prepared for departure. The second provides the platform number, details of their seat reservation and the time when the train is ready for boarding. On busy services the SMS messages are staggered, allowing passengers such as senior railcard holders and those travelling with children to board earlier.

The system uses GoMedia's Rules Engine, powered by industry standard enterprise software including Java, Drools and Kibana. Supported by GoMedia's dedicated team of technologists, the system provides Virgin Trains’ customers with a more pleasant and safer travelling experience.



“We’re delighted to be the first train operating company to offer this text message system to our customers, transforming their waiting time into leisure time. Passengers can relax and make their way to the train when they need to, creating a stress-free travel experience. Moreover, the GoMedia system will stagger boarding times so that passengers who require a bit more time to board, or who are located in the furthest coach from the concourse, are alerted first.”

- Paul Corney, Virgin Trains Customer Experience Project Manager for London Euston