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Smart Card for NZ Ski Resorts

Smart Card for NZ Ski Resorts
April 27, 2010

NZSki, the company that operates Coronet Peak, Mount Hutt and The Remarkables ski fields, is introducing a smart card called MyPass that enables guests to access lifts, hire equipment, book lessons and buy food and drinks at the three resorts.

The NZSki system will be the world's first fully integrated, stored value card. This integration allows guests to purchase NZSki product online, which will automatically be loaded onto the pass for direct to lift access. And the passes are re-usable, once guests have their pass and set up a customer profile, it can be loaded with credit or product each time they visit an NZSki mountain for years to come allowing for a seamless, direct to lift, direct to rental or direct to lesson experience. Alternatively the pass can be linked to a credit card with skiers and riders able to go directly to the lift where the day lift ticket value will be debited from their cards real time. The same process can be used to purchase other NZSki product including lessons, retail items and food & beverage.

Introducing the technology, NZSki Chief Executive James Coddington explains "lift access will be streamlined as the passes are electronically checked when skiers and boarders pass through specially designed gantries.

"Season pass holders will enjoy being able to leave their pass in a pocket without having to produce it for checking each time they access a lift. After collecting their pass this year, they will be able to directly reload season passes in future years, subject to rules around changing and updating photos. Our shorter term guests also will only have to make one visit to a Guest Services desk. Once they have their pass and have set up an account/profile, they can reload additional NZSki product via one of our on-mountain kiosks, computer or smart phone at any time in the future. Over time we expect this to significantly cut down queue times and deliver a much more customer centric experience."

The new system is also expected to virtually eliminate fraudulent use of and people skiing without passes.

Coddington adds "all relevant information, including images, will come up on a screen which lifties can easily check without having to request people to produce their pass.

"Aspen and Alta resorts in the US have cards that operate on the same radio frequency technology as MyPass but they are used only for the lifts."

The card came about because Coddington wanted to learn more about who was skiing on the mountains. And while that knowledge will determine future directions for the three resorts, the impact of the new technology will be felt by skiers from the opening day of the season on 6th June.

He anticipates that "from day one we will know which runs have been the busiest and we will be able to send out the snow groomers accordingly."

Work on installing the new system is underway and will be complete at all three ski areas in time for the season opening.


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