Making Transportation Networks Social

Have you ever wondered what that art student you see every day on the tram has in their big portfolio? Or why that man on the bus always has a different hat on? Perhaps you’ve made eye contact several times with that cute businesswoman while waiting for the number 24 tram, even got a smile, but are too shy to say hi?

A new Polish website, Poznaj Pasażera (poznajpasazera.pl), which translates to “Get to know a passenger”, aims to eliminate those social barriers between people who see each other daily on Poland’s public transportation networks.

Divided by city, the site lists all possible local transportation networks and stops. In the case of Krakow, this includes MPK trams and buses, as well as PKP connections between Krakow and nearby cities on which passengers are likely to commute daily to and from work.

To use the service, one has to register (for free), putting in their name, a picture, and information regarding their daily commute, including tram or bus number or train route, stops, and times. The service is only available in Polish at the moment, however, so non-Polish speakers will need a friend to guide them through the process.

Once registered, you can click on a route and find every user that might be travelling with you. At the moment, the service is still in its infancy, as when this brave reporter registered, I found only one other traveller sharing the number 2 tram on my daily commute (the 8 was much more popular, with 24 members). Perhaps not surprisingly, most members who used their actual pictures seemed to be in their 20s.

The site allows members to become virtual friends, and send messages to each other – a handy feature to remember next time you’re too shy to say hello to that fellow passenger.

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