Public display on vehicles


Like roadside traveller information display units, on-vehicle display units can be either LED, LCD or plasma displays. LED displays consume less power and represent lower cost, but have a lesser visual functionality and do not present additional revenue possibilities through still image and video advertising. Display types are divided into single function and multifunctional type display with each typically used to display essential passenger information such as route number, stop location, destination point, service connections, and as these displays can be integrated with AVL systems they can also show estimated time of arrival for particular stops and the final destination. LED displays tend to be single function whereas LCD and plasma are usually multifunctional due to their ability to display still images and video. Other functions include advertising, tourist information, route maps and points of interest.

AVL integrated displays have a greater functionality than standard displays. In addition to estimated arrival times for that particular service, arrival times for other services can be displayed for connecting stops which ensures that connections are not missed, thereby improving integration and customer service. The displayed information is generated from the on-board computer which links the display to the AVL and radio systems. These displays can also be used to show messages or alerts from the operations control centre to notify passengers of disruptions, these can be pre-defined or free-form, and can also be accompanied by a pre-recorded or live voice messages.


  • Traveller information
  • Advertising

Benefits and cautions

In-vehicle displays are generally less expensive than roadside displays, with LED displays representing the cheapest option but also the least flexible in terms of potential functionalities. With price differences reducing and the additional capabilities of LCD and plasma displays, these are becoming increasingly popular. Connection to AVL and radio systems is a requirement for on-board RTPI, but where AVL systems are not available on-board displays are still useful in providing an attractive medium for the display of schedule, connection and tourism information as well as advertisements.

Relevant case studies

Dublin, Izmir, Mysore, Zurich