Smart mobility, 3 out of 4 people would choose public transport if better connected

The results of an international study by Hitachi Rail, in Turin the percentage rises to 83%

75% of people would prefer the use of public transport to that of the car, if they were more integrated and connected. This is what was revealed by the international study by Hitachi Rail which analyzes the propensity to use public transport and intelligent mobility in eight cities around the world, including Turin in Italy (the survey was conducted by Savanta-ComRes on behalf of Hitachi Rail and took place between August and September 2022; 8073 individuals were interviewed).

The report notes a strong global demand for intelligent transport solutions that ensure greater interoperability and comfort. Italy is represented in the Hitachi Rail study by the city of Turin which records a percentage equal to 83% of individuals inclined to abandon traveling with individual vehicles in the presence of a more integrated, connected and efficient public transport network. The research shows that people would also be willing to pay more for a higher quality of service: 67% of respondents among Turin citizens, in fact, declare that they are ready to accept an increase in costs in order to receive a more connected and efficient service . Also in this case, those interviewed for the city of Turin show a greater openness than the global average (equal to 60%).

More in detail, the main barriers to the use of public transport in the world today they are represented by overcrowding (48%) and by the situation of ‘chaos’, understood as a lack of tranquility and comfort (42%). 80% of those interviewed in the city of Turin, where 73% currently state that they use the car to go to work, would use public transport more if they had the possibility of checking in real time how crowded they are. The two negative factors most felt by the Turinese are the overcrowding of the vehicles and the fact that times and frequencies are often not reliable.

Worldwide 78% of those interviewed identify travel time and the cheapest travel option as the two main drivers for choosing the means of transport. However, if it is true that a more connected network and a more frequent flow of information, which can be accessed in real time, can be important drivers for increasing the use of public transport in cities, it is also true that usability and safety in sharing personal data, they represent fundamental conditions in terms of use of a possible service that makes public transport more connected and efficient. In fact, only 55% of all respondents and 61% of Turin residents declare themselves willing to share their payment data with multiple travel apps and almost two-thirds of those interviewed said they are discouraged from using public transport if to do that you need to use multiple different travel apps. This reticence varies dramatically from country to country, with much lower trust in North America and the UK than in mainland Europe and Asia.

One in three respondents said that the main reason they would use more integrated, connected and efficient public transport would be to reduce their travel times. An average of 15%, which rises to 17% in Turin, says instead that they would like to use public transport more to reduce their environmental footprint. The research also shows that the public now has a strong general understanding of what ‘smart’ transport means, thanks to the high levels of use of digital apps that 59% of respondents already use to plan or book their trips. Finally, only 5% of the interviewees declare that they work exclusively from home in smart working and therefore that they do not have to use the means of transport.

Hitachi Rail, a global player in the railway sector, last year launched its smart mobility business in the city of Genoa, thus paving the way in Italy for more intermodal, connected and sustainable mobility, thanks to the GoGoGe App. “Congestion on our roads costs the country billions of unproductive hours spent by citizens in traffic every year and has serious impacts on public health. Despite the various differences in culture, standards and transport infrastructures among the eight cities chosen for the study, the solution always seems to lean towards integrated smart mobility systems. We are proud to have inaugurated two intelligent mobility systems in Italy in 2022 in the cities of Genoa and Trento where we are operational with our apps that make public transport more efficient, making it even more comfortable, and sometimes combining it with transport solutions individual. We aim to innovate and improve mobility because we believe it plays a fundamental role in people’s quality of life and the health of the environment”, says Luca D’Aquila, CEO of Hitachi Rail for Italy and COO of the Hitachi Rail Group.