What will the post COVID era mean for the transport industry?
2020 was a tough year for the transportation industry. COVID-19 changed the way of travelling with shared and public spaces becoming a threat zone for regular commuters. Nearly every business suffered from reduced operations, decreased revenue production and a steep economy. The transportation industry was no different – before the pandemic, it was cruising towards smart mobility solutions. COVID-19 forced many modes of transportation to a standstill. Many taxi companies completely shut down because they were unable to meet their operational costs and demands.
The strong blow of the pandemic forced the transport industry to mend its ways. There has been significant disruption in transportation industry with consumers reluctant in using public (shared) transport because of the COVID threat looming over their heads. Shared and smart mobility appears to be a thing of the past. People prefer private cars because isolated traveling is considered more hygienic amid the COVID wave.
The important question remains: Where is the transport industry heading in the next five years?
COVID’s impact on the transportation industry
The global pandemic is bound to have far reaching implications. The stakeholders of the transport industry will have to improvise. They should look above and beyond the conventional rule book. The pandemic has equally affected the consumers and the players of the automotive and the mobility market. The policy makers have the biggest role to play since they can ensure the growth of the transportation industry.
COVID-19 has forced the transport industry to change its course of operations. This is how the industry will have to respond to cater to the latest trends, reformed requirements and competitive factors:
Increase health, security and reliability standards
Before the pandemic, consumers decided their mode of transportation based on cost, time effectiveness and convenience. COVID, however, has altered the norms with commuters now preferring the safest mode of travel by choosing an option that has a minimum threat of infection. With the lockdown ending in most parts of the world; consumers feel inclined towards walking, riding or using private cars to go about their day. According to a recent survey; almost 70% of the shared mobility users will now prefer to walk or ride to their destination, causing significant disruption in transportation industry.
In these circumstances, meeting the required safety standards is important. Transport companies can survive only if they are meeting the quality benchmark. They will have to ensure social distancing, sanitized spaces and other safety requirements. Smart mobility solutions such as micro mobility, self-driving cars or autonomous vehicles and the ride hailing industry are expected to boom. The growth of the transportation industry will now be determined by different factors. Entities adjusting well and quick to the “new normal” will be able to survive and grow.
Adjust to the changing policies and regulations
The outbreak of the global pandemic has brought the transportation industry to a standstill. At the peak of the virus; mobility was strictly restricted. Disruption in transportation industry forced the introduction of new guidelines and regulations. States all around the world took measures to help bring back the industry on track. However, the business is not expected to reach the pre-pandemic figures soon.
There is immense pressure on governments to come up with effective policies that will ensure safety of the consumers and will also keep the economy afloat. It is expected that governments will introduce policies favoring ride-hailing companies, e-scooters and bikes. Cities such as Milan, Paris, Brussels, Seattle and Berlin have already started working on transforming car lanes into bike paths.
In today’s times, shifting to smart mobility solutions is the most sensible approach for taxi companies. Policy makers will be coming up with schemes supporting and influencing micro and smart mobility solutions. States across the globe are partnering up with micro-mobility players to promote sustainable and safe mobility solutions. E-scooters and bikes are expected to rule the transportation industry in the foreseeable future.
Leading agents of the transportation industry
With the majority of the daily commuters working from home and the rest avoiding public and shared spaces; future of the transport industry looks bleak. However, these alternate modes of transport abiding by the new SOP’s might prove to be a ray of hope for the transport industry:
Micro-mobility solutions such as e-scooters and e-bikes will be the preferred choice among the masses. They are easy to operate, making navigation easier. Moreover, they are light on the pocket and help avoid congestion. With consumers avoiding public transport and shared spaces; micro-mobility comes like a breath of fresh air to them. It is safe, isolated and a convenient mode of transport.
Autonomous vehicles are also known as self-driving cars seem to be the most appropriate choice of travel post COVID. Even before the pandemic, self-driving cars were expected to lead the transport industry by the year 2023 and generate estimated revenue of 173 billion US dollars.
With cost, convenience and comfort taking a back seat, safe, hygienic and isolated traveling is what matters the most now.
COVID-19 has revolutionized the world, our lifestyles and preferences. Under this new era, the ride-hailing platform does not seem to be the best available option but it cannot be completely ruled out either.
Earlier, merging technology with convenient travel was all the rage. Currently, the idea of shared vehicles might be daunting for some but it is still the preferred choice of travel for many consumers. It avoids public spaces and busy transit stops. The smart booking options and the ease of payment and usage has made ride-hailing survive the pandemic. Smart mobility can very well be the future of the transport industry. It is sustainable, comfortable, cheap and convenient.
Build a reliable future with CabStartup
The growth of the transportation industry will be determined by new policies, reformed trends, alternate modes of transport and smart mobility solutions. We, at CabStartup can help you build a reliable future and adjust to the changing requirements of the transport industry by helping you survive the pandemic and come out of it as leaders and pioneers of the new market.