THE UIC MERITS database (Multiple European Railways Integrated Timetable Storage) collects all schedule information of 40 connected European railways.
Each railway company provides timetable and location data and in return can use all existing information of the participating railways for its own journey planners and distribution systems.
On April 2017 the Passenger Services group (PSG) decided to give third party (non-railway companies) access to MERITS Integrated Data. To this end, a task force, and later a MERITS steering group were launched to achieve this aim.
Third parties have been informed about this decision.
In order for third parties to know about the MERITS tool, the UIC MERITS team organised a training session on MERITS standards for future third party users. The meeting was held on 13 February and hosted at the DB premises in Frankfurt.
Among the participants there were representatives from:
- GDS Travelport: David Classey, Multi Modal Programme Director
- GDS Amadeus: Patrick Heuguet, Project Manager
- GDS Sirena: Vladimir Kalyapin – Director for the implementation of IT services projects CJSC and two data specialists
- Multimodal Transport Search Engine Rome2rio: George Sotos, Project Manager
- Online Travel Agency Trainline, E. Richard, Business Analyst and Mike Reeves, Agile Developer
- NS International: Henk Hoppener, Business Consultant
UIC was represented by:
- Marc Guigon, Director of the UIC Passenger Department
- Fabrice Setta, UIC Senior Advisor Passenger Department Distribution
- Joachim Baars, Timetable Data Expert
The MERITS data manager was represented by:
- Robert Jurisch, Project Manager
- Angelina Rotolo-Piazza, Timetable Data Manager
Presentations were given on timetable and location data used within the MERITS activities and on the following subjects:
- UIC leaflets, User guide and code lists
- Technical aspects concerning the MERITS tool, data content, and data flows
- Data provider frequency deliveries, the basis of data quality
- Period covered by the MERITS data to allow a reliable booking horizon
- Minimum Connecting time, unavoidable data for journey planner application were discussed
The MERITS data manager explained the quality checks and process around import, integration and export of data.
The session allowed the participants to have in-depth and constructive exchanges; third parties showed significant interest in buying the MERITS integrated data and expressed they readiness to go further.
- After the signature of a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), UIC will provide participants with a sample of MERITS data for test purposes
- UIC will finalise the purchase process