The Government should do more to support the development and roll-out of Mobility as a Service to ensure the widest possible benefits to passengers, a group of MPs have said.
In a new report published, the Transport Committee said MaaS could transform how people travel as it will allow people to plan, book and pay for their travel across public, shared and private transport using a smartphone or other device.
Early benefits of early schemes include reduced road congestion, improved air quality and more effective transport management, the committee said, as it called on the Department for Transport to take a greater lead by funding new MaaS projects.
It also called on the Government to consider MaaS as part of its wider strategies including cycling, walking, driverless vehicles and air quality.
“The Committee warns that allowing schemes to develop in an uncontrolled way, risks unintended negative consequences such as increasing congestion and exacerbating digital and social exclusion,” the report said.
The cross-party group of MPs added: “There is a key role for Government to review and update current guidelines, codes of practice and regulations covering the provision of transport services so that MaaS schemes are properly accommodated within the regulatory framework. Passengers’ interests must be protected when they are making multi-modal journeys, in case of accident or failure in service, and their financial interests must not be harmed as the MaaS market grows. There will also need to be effective sharing of data between transport operators and MaaS platform providers, consistent with their respective commercial interests and the protection of passengers’ personal data.”
Chair of the Committee, Lilian Greenwood MP, said: “The use of smartphones has transformed the way in which people access and pay for all sorts of services, and there’s clearly potential for integrated apps that can handle route planning and booking tickets to make it much easier for people to plan and pay for their journeys. It’s essential that Government has the bigger picture on developing schemes and the maximum potential is achieved. Possible benefits such as cutting congestion on our roads and cleaner air fit in with many of the Government’s current objectives including proposals to promote cycling and walking.”