Many thanks to the organizers of the " Start
" for the excellent work. I would like to talk about what our team was able to do over the weekend as part of its project “ rzdmonitor
”, and what the service is like at the moment.
The project was born when my friends had to go to Karelia, and the tickets were only places in the suite for which there was no money. Before the planned departure there was literally a day. The founder of our project was tired of updating the schedule page on the Russian Railways site every minute, so he wrote a primitive code that checked the total number of compartments and second-class seats every five minutes. As a result, we managed to catch reserved seats and leave safely.
During the trip, we thought that it would be nice if the system looked for the most convenient places among all that is available and sent notifications about the appearance of places by sms.
In order not to develop the system chaotically, we decided to analyze all the shortcomings of both Russian Railways and numerous ticket services - we got the following list:
- If you need to find a specific place (for example, the lower reserved seat closest to the center) - on service sites you will have to spend a few minutes on clicks on each train and car until you find the right place. On the website of the Russian Railways, places are not displayed at all until the passport data is entered (upon purchase)
- If places are not available - you need to either monitor the appearance, updating the site every few minutes, or pay 500-1000 rubles to agents who will do it for you.
- The ability to book a ticket without paying for more than three hours (when paying for QIWI) is absent in principle.
- The opportunity to see who you are going with, and check in at a particular place by logging in via FB or VK, is not implemented anywhere.
When we came to the “Start” session, we had the technical part ready, which with grief in half looked for the best places according to the specified users parameters. Over the weekend we received a very useful feedback - it turned out that there are people for whom the most convenient place is the place closest to the exit, and not to the center of the car. Many people would like to be able to choose the parameters that we didn’t even think about at first.
We completed the site, optimized the search for the most convenient places and screwed the notification by sms and e-mail. The notification comes when the necessary tickets appear, which were not originally available. We invite you to use our service, and we hope that it will be more than useful.
Our immediate plans include the possibility of indefinite booking of tickets, integration with ticket.rzd.ru for buying tickets without commission, and adding “social” functions.
The service is currently free. Further monetization is expected due to the introduction of a fixed payment for monitoring tickets and a small booking fee (a small one is 10–20 rubles; the commission for buying tickets for numerous services is now at least 200 rubles).
We are looking for web developers (to speed up the development of the service), and investors (so that there is, what to pay the developers). I would not like to cover the technology of collecting information, as this may deprive us of any competitive advantage.
We are pleased to answer questions about the project and listen to your feedback.
The founder of the project, and, in combination, the developer, would like very much to respond to comments, but, unfortunately, he does not have such an opportunity. If someone has an invite for him - he will be more than grateful!