Home > Insights >Mobility as a Service – the future of transport integration

By Matt Abrams, Commercial Director, AssetGo

According to Exactitude Consultancy, ‘the global mobility as a service market is expected to grow at 18% CAGR from 2024 to 2030, rising from $2.37 billion in 2023 to $10.85 billion by 2030.’ The innovative concept of Mobility as a Service (MaaS) has the potential to reshape how transport operators approach service delivery, customer engagement and their business models. MaaS integrates various forms of transport services into a single accessible on-demand platform, offering seamless travel experiences for users. For transport operators, understanding and leveraging MaaS is crucial to stay competitive and meet the growing expectations of a digitally savvy clientele.

Understanding Mobility as a Service (MaaS)

MaaS is an integrated approach to urban mobility that combines transportation services from public and private providers through a unified digital interface. This service model allows users to plan, book and pay for multiple types of mobility services, such as public transit, ridesharing, car rentals, bike-sharing and even e-scooters, using a single application. Essentially, MaaS shifts the focus from vehicle ownership to mobility access, offering a user-centric approach that prioritises convenience and efficiency.

At its core, MaaS aims to provide a complete solution to urban mobility challenges, addressing issues like congestion, pollution and limited accessibility. By aggregating different transport modes into one system, MaaS simplifies the user experience, making it easier for people to move around cities without relying on personal vehicles.

The potential impact on transport operators

For transport operators, MaaS represents an opportunity to enhance the customer experience significantly. By participating in a MaaS ecosystem, operators can offer their services as part of a broader, more convenient travel solution. This integration can lead to increased usage, as customers are more likely to use services that are easy to access and use. Additionally, MaaS platforms can provide valuable data insights into customer preferences and travel patterns, enabling operators to tailor services to meet the specific needs of their users.

MaaS can drive significant improvements in operational efficiency for transport operators. By leveraging real-time data and analytics, operators can optimise routes, reduce idle times and better match supply with demand. This not only leads to cost savings but also improves service reliability and punctuality. Moreover, the shared infrastructure of MaaS reduces the need for significant investment in new vehicles and infrastructure, as existing resources can be utilised more effectively.

The integration of diverse transport modes under MaaS opens up new revenue opportunities for operators. Beyond traditional ticket sales, operators can explore partnerships and bundled service offerings, such as combined transit passes or loyalty programmes. MaaS also enables dynamic pricing models, where operators can adjust prices based on demand, time of day, or user profiles, maximising revenue potential.

Embracing MaaS aligns with growing societal demands for sustainable and environmentally friendly transport solutions. By promoting the use of shared and public transportation modes over private car ownership, MaaS can contribute to reducing traffic congestion, lowering emissions, and improving urban air quality. For transport operators, this not only enhances their corporate social responsibility profile but also aligns with regulatory trends pushing for greener urban mobility solutions.

Challenges and considerations

While MaaS presents numerous benefits, transport operators must navigate several challenges to fully capitalise on its potential. Key considerations include:

Integration and interoperability

Achieving seamless integration between different transport services requires robust technological infrastructure and collaboration among various stakeholders. Operators need to invest in interoperable systems and standards to ensure smooth data exchange and service coordination.

Data security and privacy

The success of MaaS relies heavily on the collection and analysis of user data. Transport operators must prioritise data security and privacy, ensuring compliance with regulations and maintaining user trust.

Business models and revenue sharing

Developing sustainable business models and fair revenue-sharing agreements among different transport providers is critical. Operators need to negotiate partnerships that balance profitability with service quality and affordability for users.

Regulatory and policy frameworks

The regulatory environment for MaaS is still evolving. Transport operators must stay informed about policy developments and advocate for supportive frameworks that facilitate MaaS adoption and innovation.

An opportunity for enhanced service delivery

Mobility as a Service offers transport operators a unique opportunity to enhance service delivery, drive operational efficiency and contribute to sustainable urban development. By embracing MaaS, operators can meet the changing demands of modern urban travellers, positioning themselves at the forefront of the mobility revolution. However, realising the full potential of MaaS requires strategic investments in technology, collaboration among stakeholders and a forward-thinking approach to business and policy challenges. As cities continue to grow and evolve, MaaS could play critical part in creating more efficient, sustainable and user-friendly transport systems. Transport operators who recognise and act on this potential will be well-equipped to lead the industry into a new era of mobility.