In rail transport
Rail transport is a means of conveyance of passengers and goods by way of wheeled vehicles running on rail tracks. In contrast to road transport, where vehicles merely run on a prepared surface, rail vehicles are also directionally guided by the tracks they run on...
, the paid area is a dedicated "inner" zone in a railway station sealed by barriers. A system using paid areas is often called fare control. Passengers are allowed to enter or exit only through a faregate. A paid area usually exists in rapid transit
A rapid transit, underground, subway, elevated railway, metro or metropolitan railway system is an electric passenger railway in an urban area with a high capacity and frequency, and grade separation from other traffic. Rapid transit systems are typically located either in underground tunnels or on...
railway stations for separating the train platform from the station exit, assuring a passenger has paid or prepaid before reaching the platform and using any transport service. Such design requires a well organized railway station layout
Railway station layout
A railway station is a place where trains make scheduled stops. Stations usually have one or more platforms constructed alongside a line of railway. However, railway stations come in many different configurations - influenced by such factors as the geographical nature of the site, or the need to...
The paid area is similar in concept to the airside at an airport. However in most cases entrance to the paid area requires only a valid ticket. The exception is in international rail travel, where passengers must also pass through immigration control and customs to enter the paid area. Examples include the Eurostar
Eurostar is a high-speed railway service connecting London with Paris and Brussels. All its trains traverse the Channel Tunnel between England and France, owned and operated separately by Eurotunnel....
international platforms at St. Pancras railway station and Gare du Nord
Gare du Nord
Paris Nord is one of the six large terminus railway stations of the SNCF mainline network for Paris, France. It offers connections with several urban transportation lines, including Paris Métro and RER...
or Tanjong Pagar
Tanjong Pagar is a historic district located within the Central Business District in Singapore, straddling the Outram Planning Area and the Downtown Core under the Urban Redevelopment Authority's urban planning zones....
railway station in Singapore
Singapore , officially the Republic of Singapore, is a Southeast Asian city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, north of the equator. An island country made up of 63 islands, it is separated from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to its north and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the...
, where the only departures are to neighboring Malaysia.
Platform TicketA platform ticket
A platform ticket is a type of rail ticket issued by some railway systems, permitting the bearer to access the platforms of a railway station, but not to board and use any train services. It allows people to walk with their friends and loved ones all the way to the passenger car at stations where...
allows non-travelers access to the paid area of a station to greet friends and family members or to assist them with their luggage without having to have a ticket for a journey. These are generally available only at major terminal stations.