Mobility has changed radically as a result of restrictions in place to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. At MaaS Global, we spend our days developing competitive alternatives to the private car. While it is still too early to tell what the new normal will look like, it is clear that our competition just got harder.
To ensure that we keep moving forward in a sustainable way and can combat the climate crisis, we believe that all mobility players need to work together. The more options there are to move about, from public transport to taxis and rental services, to healthy underbrush of micromobility, the more sustainable and resilient the community is.
According to Jarkko Jaakkola, Area Manager for the Nordics and Baltics, this is a time where you can really see the strength of MaaS.
– The advantage of being a MaaS operator is that we have the opportunity to work flexibly with our partners, so we can respond to exceptional circumstances and create services to fit the situation. In a crisis of this scale, individual actors might not be able to solve challenges on their own – which is why the right results can only be achieved through cooperation, he says.
During the last months the team at MaaS Global has been working hard to respond to the changes to daily life and quickly developed offerings to fit new needs. We for example offered city bike season passes at a significantly lower price and developed the Whim Flex subscription for those who need access to a rental car. We are also offering a 50 percent discount on the Whim Urban 30 subscription to bring customers back to public transport.
In addition, we have partnered with health care professionals to offer safe transport at a significantly discounted price and established several new partnerships to offer sustainable employee mobility benefits. The team is also looking into new features like seat reservation and solutions to avoid crowded hours.
While the times are challenging for all mobility players, the cloud does have some silver linings. One is the inspiration and creativity it has unleashed, with new initiatives being introduced in every modality. According to Ida Schauman, Policy and Government Affairs Manager, the crisis has also created a new level of unity and increased trust in the mobility field.
– The lack of trust between the different parties has been one of the main obstacles for multimodality, and I am very happy to see this diminishing. Now is the time for mobility players to unite in efforts for sustainable transportation – we are just so much stronger together, she says.
According to Schauman, MaaS Global has been working hard to ensure emergency funding for public transport and for incentives like mobility budgets to encourage sustainable choices when restrictions are lifted. Public transport is the backbone of MaaS and the field is doing everything it can to support the return of the customer in a post-COVID world. She encourages all public transport providers to reach out if they think a partnership with MaaS Global can help them in returning to normal.