Answering the Big Microtransit Questions, Part 2

Published: January 11, 2021

In our last post, we discussed why on-demand is becoming a popular way for agencies to add service capacity, fill gaps in transportation networks, and offer riders a more convenient, seamless way to use public transit. Now, we’re diving into how Moovit On-Demand takes microtransit a step further using urban mobility data and our app to offer a full MaaS solution that supports on-demand solutions. So, how does Moovit On-Demand set itself apart from the noise? Let’s see!

What is the Moovit Difference? 

Moovit On-Demand differs from others by utilizing data from the six billion data points collected every day, which enables our customers to better understand the current demand and where their transit gaps lie in order to build a more efficient and holistic on-demand service from the start. 

Moovit’s sophisticated dynamic routing algorithms employ real-time data to add other riders headed in the same direction for a more environmentally friendly way to travel, guided by our customers’ pre-defined requirements on capacity, pick-up/drop-off times, time waiting, and more for quality control.  Further, Moovit can integrate the on-demand service into our app (also available as a white label offering), which has guided nearly a billion users to their destinations. That way, your customers enjoy a single transit platform, complete with real-time information, on-demand booking, and even allows payment integrations for the complete ‘plan, ride, pay,’ passenger experience. 

How does Moovit leverage data to plan and optimize on-demand? 

Transit data is essential to a successful on-demand service, and Moovit knows how to employ it for our customers’ best interests. Good transit data finds where existing services are not fulfilling their rider requirements, especially transit deserts where the supply is far below the demand, to find where on-demand services can solve those gaps. 

Using Moovit’s unparalleled app data from hundreds of millions of riders worldwide, we understand origin-destination better than others. We can detect those gaps and help agencies determine the optimal service zones where on-demand would best fit before deploying vehicles on the ground. By understanding today’s actual demand, as opposed to using only historical data or manual survey data, agencies are able to optimize their on-demand service with the most up-to-date transit data available.

Case Study: Identifying Transit Gaps and Inefficiencies to Increase Ridership

How does Moovit find the perfect fit for on-demand services? 

Drawing a massive service area with a limited amount of service vehicles undoubtedly creates inefficiencies, including dead-running and not being able to aggregate enough riders to make the services profitable. Instead of starting with a blank canvas, we help our customers break down service areas into smaller corridors with different levels of demand. 

To do so, we look at the different types of service areas where you’d like to implement on-demand and consider the different needs, whether in the suburbs, industrial zones, business parks, etc. 

Using your chosen service zone, we help determine the mobility patterns of the full area and break it down into corridors that correspond to specific mobility needs. One corridor may offer on-demand services as a first- last-mile solution to bring riders to and from a transit hub, while another corridor using the same on-demand solution could be used for the full end-to-end ride. These corridors, and the vehicles assigned to them, can be changed throughout the day as demand in different corridors changes. When an unexpected demand surge occurs, vehicles can be dynamically re-assigned.

Based on the key operating parameters we define together, including the service area, timetable, fleet size, and pooling parameters, we simulate thousands of trips to evaluate the ‘winners’ and ‘losers’ of your service design changes based on your SLAs. These simulations make it easy to understand how many vehicles should be assigned to each corridor and how, where, and when the service should be optimized, tailored to your specifications. 

How does Moovit On-Demand reduce congestion?

This is a question that is currently on every city’s mind in the wake of COVID. As lockdowns end and people go back to work, how are cities and agencies going to prevent a mass flock back to private cars? A recent study found that on-demand microtransit can reduce congestion by up to 30% because it attracts people who may otherwise take their car or a ride-hailing service.

Where ride-hailing or cars usually drive with one or two passengers at the maximum, on-demand vehicles can fit five to 15 passengers, and capacity limits can be added in conjunction with local regulations on social distancing. The convenience of on-demand microtransit is in line with the modern, on-demand services people now expect in their daily lives, and when implemented correctly, will bring new riders into the system who would otherwise take less environmentally-friendly modes of transport. 

Watch the full presentation here


If the status quo of fixed-routes no longer works, agencies now have an additional mobility option that better integrates data and technology to improve their network as well as their customers’ experience. As agencies reevaluate their operations due to the current COVID-19 challenges, on-demand transit solutions are becoming a way to save money and improve operational efficiency. By selecting Moovit On-Demand, you’re not only enabling efficient operations, but you’re also partnering with our expertise and experience in setting up successful solutions to solve various mobility challenges around the world. 

Ready to get started with Moovit On-Demand?

Download our brochure here and schedule a demo by letting us know here


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