FREE NOW, Europe’s leading multi-mobility platform, has seen a favourable development in ride hailing and has observed a dynamic recovery in this sector after the pandemic, estimating a doubling of the brand’s local operations in Romania in 2022. FREE NOW remains the multi-mobility platform that offers drivers the lowest commission in the market, making it the most convenient option for partnership.
According to statistics on the FREE NOW platform, the total number of users in all countries where it is present reached 54 million. Among all 170 European cities where the app operates, Bucharest ranked eighth in 2021 in terms of the number of rides, while a total distance of almost 24 million kilometers was traveled in Romania, equivalent to 62 times the distance between the Earth and the Moon. The average value of a trip was about 17 lei and the average distance was just over 5 km.
FREE NOW launches Mobility as a Service (MaaS) Report
Using data from external studies, internal surveys and platform statistics, FREE NOW has released the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) Report, which analyses last year’s review and looks at the multi-mobility industry outlook and trends for 2022.
According to the Report, in 2021, FREE NOW recorded a growing demand for greener mobility options and saw users switching away from traditional combustion engines. The number of trips taken using electric vehicles has significantly increased across Europe, by 79%. Thus, in Romania alone, the average number of electric vehicle rides increased in 2021 by 15% compared to 2020.
The report also highlights an increase in Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and the need for passengers to have a “multi-mobility Super App” that gives them easy access to all mobility options on demand. It also shows the evolution of FREE NOW from a taxi app to a multi-mobility platform, as it has expanded its network of partners globally, integrating micro-mobility and carsharing operators. In Germany, for example, FREE NOW already has all integrated multi-mobility options available, such as e-scooters, e-mopeds, carsharing, and bikes, and is already developing as a Super App in other European countries.
”People want to get easily from A to B whenever they need. With the seamless integration of multiple mobility brands and various vehicle options bookable within one app, we are meeting the trend of on-demand consumption. Flexibility and almost unconditional availability are the decisive factors for services in the 21st century, also for sustainable urban mobility. We see huge market potential for the European multi-mobility market. 2022 will be the year multi-mobility becomes mainstream and reaches a wider audience”, says Marc Berg, CEO FREE NOW.
For 2022, FREE NOW estimates that ride hailing will recover and will soon return to pre-pandemic levels. In addition, more and more users are opting for solutions that help reduce CO2 emissions, pointing to the transition to electric vehicles in the taxi and ride hailing fleet.
Another trend mentioned in the report describes that cities need to provide access to efficient multi-mobility options, prioritizing green transport over individual mobility, so collaboration with MaaS platforms will be key. It also notes people’s inclination to use one app for all mobility options, hence the need for the development of a “multi-mobility Super App”.
”Looking further into the future, we know it’s all about mobility, which doesn’t just include cars. The future of mobility works within a holistic ecosystem with good collaboration and strong partnerships, particularly in urban areas. We believe that we can offer the most intuitive user journey across many areas, which includes external factors like weather or services that take place before and after trips, such as availability of accommodation, flight dates and food options”, continues Marc Berg.
In Romania, FREE NOW offers ridesharing and taxi services, as of 27 November 2019. The app is currently available to passengers in 9 cities: Bucharest, Cluj, Brasov, Iasi, Constanta, Sibiu, Oradea, Timisoara and Targu Mures.