View Full Version : Alta Ski Area to Implement Automated Ticketing

06-22-2007, 07:39 AM

Alta Ski Area to Implement Automated Ticketing
First Tracks!!

Alta, UT - Change comes hard to tradition-bound Alta Ski Area, but it's coming more and more frequently to this Utah skiing icon. After decades of traditional hand-printed lift tickets adhering to metal wickets, Alta officials have decided to implement a high-tech point-of-sale ticketing system and automated lift access controls in time for the coming winter season.

After several years of evaluation and analysis, Alta has signed an agreement with Park City, Ut.-based Axess North America to implement a new POS ticketing system and handsfree access control system. Axess Gates and radio frequency identification (RFID) tickets will be used to control access to the lifts while providing guests various web-based functions.

Alta spokesperson Connie Marshall indicates that the Alta access gate design will be unique. Instead of the turnstile design employed at other ski areas, Axess North America has designed for Alta a two-part gate that will open away from the skier, Marshall says, believing that it may be the first design of this type to be implemented at any ski area worldwide. A two-antenna system will be deployed to ensure adequate communication between the access gate and the user's lift ticket.

Although Marshall acknowledges the potential to reduce labor costs by eliminating ticket checkers, Alta plans no cutbacks during the first year to ensure a smooth transition. This winter, Alta will deploy its traditional ticket checkers to the access gate to assist guests where necessary.

Point-of-sale outlets will be implemented within Alta's ticket offices and the town's handful of ski lodges. No plans currently exist to offer automated off-site lift ticket sales.

Alta's traditionalists have become accustomed to reading birthday announcements and other special vanity messages adorning each day's printed lift tickets. Asked whether Alta's core clientele will balk at the new technology, Marshall expresses confidence that even season passholders will appreciate not having to dig out a lift pass at each liftline. "Alta's innermost circle won't even notice," she assets. "We're not anticipating a lot of problems."