Elevating Rail Travel: Excellence in Every Journey

At DB E.C.O. North America, we understand that at the heart of every transit system are its users – the passengers. While all our services emphasize enhancing the user experience, our dedicated Customer Experience offerings delve more deeply and comprehensively into the diverse needs and expectations of rail travelers.

A truly successful transit network isn’t just about moving from point A to B; it’s about the seamless end-to-end journey – encompassing diverse transport modes, guaranteeing accessibility for all, and deploying intuitive and reliable ticketing systems. Our strength is in refining and revolutionizing these critical touchpoints. Our expertise extends to the digital realm, utilizing state-of-the-art technologies to create user-friendly interfaces and platforms. Moreover, fostering collaboration between agencies and businesses lies at the core of our strategy, ensuring a unified vision and cohesive execution. With our support, clients can envisage and realize a seamless Customer Journey, streamlining the intricate process from travel planning to the actual journey.

Our Services

Customer Journey Optimization

The Challenge

In today’s rapidly evolving world, railway passengers expect more than just a commute; they seek a comprehensive travel experience. Modern customers desire convenience, punctuality, real-time communication, efficient digital interfaces, and a service that caters to their individual needs. This shift in expectations is driven by advancements in technology, with other industries setting high standards for personalized and smooth user experiences. Failing to meet these standards is no longer an option for rail and transit agencies and operators.

Previously, the rail industry, much like many other traditional sectors, often overlooked customer experience, focusing primarily on operational efficiencies and fiscal performance. However, in a digital age where word of mouth travels at the speed of light and where customers have a plethora of options to choose from, positive customer experiences become crucial differentiators. It directly influences customer loyalty, brand reputation, and ultimately, profitability. Yet, despite the clear need for transformation, many rail and transit agencies still struggle to meet these evolving expectations. The reasons are multifaceted. Legacy systems and infrastructure are difficult and costly to overhaul. Integrating modern digital solutions with older technologies poses challenges.

Staff training and organizational culture shifts require time and resources. Moreover, balancing the immediate operational needs with long-term strategic transformations can be a daunting task, especially with constrained budgets and regulatory hurdles. Addressing these challenges is not merely a matter of staying relevant, but a commitment to improving and evolving alongside the needs and desires of today’s informed and perceptive passenger.

Our Service

Customer Journey Analysis

Often a first step in improving the customer journey experience, is to create a thorough understanding of the customers’ current experience. We accomplish this by mapping every touchpoint the customers engage with across all channels, ensuring we capture the entire spectrum of their journey. Then, diving deep into each touchpoint, we identify gaps, pain points, and potential areas of improvement, segmenting our analysis by customer group for precision.

To ensure our insights are competitive, we benchmark these touchpoints against international industry standards and best practices. Underpinning our analysis is the utilization of cutting-edge data analytics. By collecting and analyzing passenger data, we extract valuable insights into their behaviors and preferences. Additionally, we use advanced forecasting tools to predict peak travel times and potential disruptions, ensuring proactive planning.

Defining Requirements

We identify and categorize relevant customer groups, including those with disabilities, to ensure every passenger’s needs are accounted for. Leveraging our vast experience and benchmark knowledge from numerous rail and transit systems both domestically and internationally, we define the diverse needs of these personas. This allows us to precisely define and prioritize requirements for each customer journey touchpoint, ensuring a tailored approach.

Service Design

Using the defined requirements, we commence with the conceptualization, mapping out how requirements can shape the client’s future products and service offerings. This includes designing and launching intuitive digital interfaces and applications, including efficient trip-planners and real-time communication tools, ensuring passengers remain informed at every stage of their journey.

Efficiency is key, so we streamline ticketing, boarding, and alighting processes, making them more user-friendly. We define desired intermodal transportation links to ensure seamless transitions for passengers, optimizing schedules to reduce waiting times. Our design thinking extends to physical spaces as well. We provide advice on necessary fleet and infrastructure upgrades, focusing on enhancing customer comfort and safety. For example, our recommendations for station redesign prioritize ease of navigation and accessibility, complemented by the integration of digital tools such as digital signage and self-service kiosks.


Our support doesn’t end at planning as we guide our clients through all steps of implementing their new customer journey experience strategy. Recognizing the importance of personnel in this transformation, we assist in driving a training and organizational culture shift.

This ensures every staff member embodies a customer-first philosophy. As always, leadership is crucial. Hence, we organize workshops aiming to embed a customer-centric organizational culture at the helm. To maintain this culture, we help in crafting feedback and reward mechanisms that reinforce desirable behaviors. As communication is central, we aid in developing transparent communication strategies, ensuring customer expectations are set and managed.

Our Experience

At DB E.C.O. North America, we derive our strength from a deep understanding of North American mobility needs, enriched by the time-tested expertise of Deutsche Bahn, a global leader in rail and transit. Deutsche Bahn excels in devising and implementing comprehensive mobility solutions, evident by the integration of transport modes ranging from buses, trams, commuter and regional trains to high-speed services and first- and last-mile offerings. All under a unified ticketing system, ensuring a seamless journey for everyone, be it local residents, those with disabilities, or international travelers. With a track record of innovative products and bespoke digital solutions, such as the DB Navigator, Deutsche Bahn has in recent years consistently been at the vanguard of shaping the future of mobility. With us, clients tap into this world-class proficiency, tailored perfectly to the nuances and opportunities of the North American landscape.

Interior & Exterior Fleet Design

The Challenge

The train itself serves as the centerpiece of any rail operation. For passenger rail services, a well-designed train car’s interior and exterior can enhance the customer experience, shape positive brand perception, and streamline operations. When fleets need replacement or refurbishment to extend their useful life, it presents an opportunity to reconsider designs and bring these benefits to life.

DB E.C.O. North America applies an integrated approach that combines innovative industrial design with design thinking, strong rail expertise, and operational experience. It’s crucial to ensure not only an appealing product but also functionalities that meet the evolving needs of our customers and ensure successful and cost-effective procurement and implementation.

Our Service

New Fleet Design

We collaborate closely with our clients to determine design requirements and define a product vision. This involves integrating input from operations and maintenance departments, rider research, and stakeholder engagement. Drawing from global best practices and recent advancements, we aim to create designs that exceed current standards for comfort, accessibility, sustainability, and technology integration.

These designs can be flexibly adapted over the equipment lifecycle. The exterior design, interior layout, design language, and CMF (color, material, finish) concepts are developed iteratively. This process incorporates user testing results and stakeholder feedback, utilizing sketches and renderings, mockups and prototypes, and virtual reality implementations. Throughout the process, we validate design concepts for regulatory compliance and market viability, working in tandem with procurement to ensure that the design vision and guidelines are clearly specified for tender and production.

Existing Fleet Redesign

We employ the same systematic design process for the modernization of existing fleets, always prioritizing timely and cost-effective delivery. From simple touch-up needs to comprehensive refurbishment projects, we pinpoint current issues and devise design solutions to address them. We source materials and components from trusted suppliers and support their implementation, always aiming to develop a product that looks better than just new, surpassing its original state.

Our Experience

DB E.C.O. North America leverages the experience of Deutsche Bahn, the owner of one of the largest passenger rail fleets that provide transit for millions of people every day. Deutsche Bahn knows the implications of making sound design decisions.

In addition to lessons learned from these international fleet design and procurement projects, DB E.C.O. North America has strong relationships with accomplished design firms specializing in rail as well as an extensive supplier network. Our team possesses a robust grasp of North American regulatory requirements and market conditions, allowing us to tailor international best practices to the needs of our domestic clients.


Svenja Leister


Thomas Meinl


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