People ask me if I have my own car and my reply has always been the same. Hong Kong has one of the best public transport systems in the world. We even have Uber (despite ongoing political wrangling) in the city of nearly 8 million people. That said, Statista estimated that the city had 878,539 registered vehicles in 2019, up 12,000 up the previous year.
Just a few days ago, I attended a meeting in which one of the participants complained that he droved around a district for 30 minutes looking for parking space. He found one and walked 15 minutes from the car park to the meeting venue.
Me? I walked less than 10 minutes from the train station to the same venue. Another delegate took a bus. A third took Uber.
The concept of MaaS involves the provision of multi-modal end-to-end travel services through a single platform by which users can determine the best route and price according to real-time traffic conditions and demand.
The research identified government investment in public transport and public-led partnerships between MaaS vendors and transport operators as key to incentivising adoption by consumers over the next four years.
However, it cautioned that the need for mobile devices and Internet connectivity will limit adoption to developed regions. As a result, it predicts that over 70% of these displaced journeys will occur in Europe and the Far East by 2025.
MaaS to disrupt travel ecosystems
The new report, Mobility-as-a-Service: Business Models, Vendor Strategies & Market Forecasts 2021-2027, anticipated that, as the pandemic wanes, MaaS solution providers should view the increasing demand for travel as an opportunity to disrupt established transport provision ecosystems by demonstrating the cost-effectiveness and efficiencies of their platforms.
Research author Adam Wears explained that as travel returns to normal, solution providers must look to maximise the benefits of their services, by offering as many transport modalities as possible through their platforms.
“Therefore, signing partnerships to maximise the value of their MaaS offering must be considered the highest priority,” he concluded.
Significant environmental benefits
By displacing a high volume of car journeys, MaaS will also generate a saving of CO2 emissions worth 14 million metric tons in 2025: rising from 3 million metric tons in 2021.
The report predicts that increasing electrification of private taxis and buses is essential to realise this growth in carbon emission reductions over the next 4 years. To achieve this, it urges increasing investment into electrification technologies from governmental bodies, to accelerate adoption amongst public transport operators to benefit from lower-emission vehicles sooner.