It’s a truth universally acknowledged that everybody stuck in traffic is looking for a way out. In Canada, more than 15.9 million people commute to work, with the average driver spending a little over 24 minutes doing so. With rising populations in many cities across the globe, city planners are using more creative means to address gridlock, traffic, and pollution.
Generally, most cities are experiencing a renaissance of sorts in carpooling and ridesharing as more and more people find different ways of commuting and travelling. A recent trend known as Mobility as a Service (MaaS) has been pilot tested in a few select cities, and, due to its popularity, may be coming to your town sooner than you think. Read on for more information about what to expect from MaaS transit.
What Is Mobility as a Service?
At its core, Mobility as a Service uses a digital platform for end-to-end trip planning, booking, and payment. It centres around getting individual users to their destinations based on vehicle accommodations and real-time conditions.
Although many of us already have certain rideshare and carpooling service apps on our phones like Lyft or Uber, MaaS is different because it centralizes your trip into a one-stop service, and it also focuses on other means of travel besides car use. In other words, MaaS works as if you subscribe to a monthly public transportation pass that includes a variety of transit options such as train, taxi, and bike service, in addition to the typical subway or bus.
Why Is MaaS So Popular if It Hasn’t Even Been Used Yet?
Mobility as a Service is gaining traction in transportation because by centralizing methods of travel, it simplifies a variety of issues like payment, scheduling, traffic congestion, and pollution. Cities everywhere are facing a growing population that requires an appropriate, working means of transportation, and that means figuring out how to use cars efficiently. Five cars that carry one person each and then spend the majority of the day sitting in a parking lot isn’t necessary the best use of precious space in a crowded city.
Students in mechanic colleges might know that on-demand services for transportation are nothing new. For the past decade or so, there has been a steady rise in e-hailing, which meets individual needs without requiring the expenses of car ownership. However, as populations continue to grow and cities balloon in size, these options might be further encouraged.
What MaaS Means for Auto Repair Programs
Mobility as a service is not an anti-mechanic or automotive idea. Rather, it is a concept that balances convenience and cost, and offers a personalized demand-driven and demand-responsive experience.
MaaS helps to make transportation more convenient for everyone. While the effects that this would have remains to be seen, it could mean fewer cars overall, but that the cars on the road wear down faster and need more maintenance. MaaS could also help to boost car use in general, as more and more people can afford a membership. For students in auto repair programs, it could present a world of interesting new possibilities.
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