This time we have TFL as the main offender, breaking the most basic aspects of design.
They have ‘disabled’ their most valuable customers from buying their own product.
As an annual ticket buyer, I have no more physical option to purchase annual tickets from TFL.
They have removed pretty much all of their physical outlets that sell tickets, where I was able to buy tickets before.
On their extremely outdated web site, they only allow purchase of annual tickets a week or more before it expires, which I always forget to do on time.
This is natural for busy humans to do and there is no reason why annual tickets should require purchasing a week ahead of their expiry date.
It is also hilarious that TFL’s own staff members do not know where a customer can buy an annual ticket.
Try asking them one time and see how they get muddled up in a confusing mess of mumbling to each other.
This follows their usual militant interrogatory style of: ‘What do you want?!’ communication.
Another extremely annoying aspect of TFL’s service is that it’s tricky to work out on their terminals when your ticket is expiring.
On the above interface it is really hard to quickly scan the ‘status’ of my ticket and understand when it will expire.
Most of the time, checking ticket status on a physical machine is ‘pressurised’ by the fact that people tend to do this few minutes before the train arrives.
It’s further pressurised by the fact that most of the time other people are waiting to buy their tickets after you, so the person is put into the ‘panic mode’.
This kind of interface therefore requires extreme simplicity and quick interactions, which this example doesn’t show at all.
All these factors end up adding to my extreme dislike towards TFL’s monopolistic services.