Momentum: Issue #69

April 12, 2021

ITS America, AAA, and Cubic Release National Survey on MOD Usage

On-demand transportation options, such as Lyft, Uber, GIG Car Share, Zipcar, electric scooter sharing, and bike-sharing, are growing fixtures in American cities, though approximately six in 10 people admit they have tried them only once, or not at all.

According to a national survey co-sponsored by ITS America’s Mobility on Demand Alliance, AAA, and Cubic and released on April 8, those who have used one or more of these Mobility on Demand (MOD) services had a positive experience. Join us for more in-depth information on a webinar tomorrow about this first-of-its kind survey!

Americans show strong interest in MOD across urban, suburban, and even rural communities where these services are available. Specifically, while only 38% of Americans report having used on-demand mobility, 80% of users reported satisfaction with the options available to them.

MOD adoption and satisfaction rates varied based on age to some degree. For instance, people ages 55 and older, while less likely than those younger to use on-demand mobility services (27% vs. 44%, respectively), tend to be somewhat more satisfied with their mobility options (86% vs. 78%, respectively) – though satisfaction rates were consistently high across generations.

Users of on-demand transportation generally think their community is better off (66%) with access to these services than without, citing fewer DUI episodes, easier trip planning, and faster trip times as some of the most common benefits.

“On-demand mobility options are reshaping how people get to where they need to go,” said Shailen Bhatt, President & CEO of ITS America. “MOD is breaking down silos around how we deliver transportation. Private sector mobility companies are teaming up with cities, transit agencies, and states to provide a broader range of mobility options.”

For MOD users, shared rental bikes and scooters often replace walkable trips, whereas the use of rideshare and carshare services typically replaces rides from friends, public transit, or trips in the traveler’s car. However, only 13% of respondents would consider giving up their cars in favor of on-demand options if MOD were to become available in their community in the next two years. Respondents who are younger, non-white, or lower income levels, however, are relatively more open to giving up their vehicles under these circumstances compared to their counterparts.

“Knowing what people think about on-demand transportation helps to build and expand a range of mobility options that better meet Americans’ mobility needs,” said Jake Nelson, AAA’s Director of Traffic Safety Advocacy & Research. “Keep in mind that seven in 10 Americans have safety concerns about trying these modes. These include using them alongside vehicle traffic and pedestrians, liability concerns when crashes occur, and concerns about whether hired drivers have been properly vetted.”

Americans would be more likely to take full advantage of available mobility options if consistent laws and regulations were in place to address evolving mobility needs and consumer concerns. 

While on-demand mobility services have become more prevalent in urban areas over the last 10 years, they also continue to expand and develop across suburban and rural communities. ITS America and AAA want to inform and encourage industry, media, and policymakers to find ways to help consumers better leverage advanced transportation services for improved mobility.

The survey was conducted from December 22, 2020 – January 5, 2021, using a probability-based panel designed to represent the U.S. household population overall. The panel provided sample coverage of approximately 97% of the U.S. household population. Most surveys were completed online; consumers without internet access were surveyed over the phone. A total of 4,038 interviews were conducted among U.S. adults 18 years of age or older. The margin of error for the study overall is 2.2% at a 95% confidence level. Smaller subgroups have larger error margins. An executive summary is available here.