Mobility and transportation have been upended by the COVID-19 crisis. Ridership in major metros across the U.S., Europe, and China has declined 50-90% compared to pre-crisis levels. While stay-at-home orders are being lifted, the global impact of this health crisis will have long-lasting effects, and how transit agencies respond to rider concerns will be crucial in instilling confidence and boosting ridership in a post pandemic world.
To understand what key changes public transit agencies need to make to help ease concerns about returning to public transportation, we polled 1,000 Americans (age 18+) and found out:
Knowledge Is Power - And Control
As riders look to get back to normal they want to understand how they can keep social distancing in transit. This is why one in three (36%) would feel more comfortable if they had the ability to know how many passengers were on board before riding.
Becoming mobile-centric is vital for any business looking to engage today’s consumer. When it comes to riding public transit, mobile integration could make riders feel safer, too. In fact, two in five (39%) say hands-free payment via a mobile device would make them more comfortable riding public transit.
Riders Want to be Heard
Consumer feedback dictates business decisions across industries. Public transportation should be no different, especially in the wake of COVID-19. In fact, one in four (25%) say being able to report concerns and feedback post-ride would make them more comfortable.
“As Americans consider how they’ll get around again once COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions are loosened, public transit has been tasked with not just responding to the crisis, but pivoting services to meet rider concerns. As mobility innovators, we are not avoiding this sentiment but rather embracing it to ignite critical change,” said Justin Rees, CEO of Ford Mobility’s TransLoc, DoubleMap and Ride Systems.
Key partnerships between transit providers and transit innovators will be integral to easing concerns and reassuring anxious riders it is safe to return to public transportation, so that transit can get back to doing what it does best - providing mobility for all.
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