E-scooter sharing in short to medium-distance travel has arrived. According to Statista, the number of e-scooter users will rise to 134.7 million in the next four years. Micromobility is winning big as an unconventional mode of transportation.
But could it become a mainstay in short-distance travel? This alternative mode of transportation offers a lot of hits with just a few misses. Let’s deep dive into scooter sharing for trips to understand what works, what doesn’t, and how it could be made better.
How Electric Scooter Sharing is Changing Short Transit Trips
Researchers from the Cities Research Institute, Griffith University, found something very interesting during their partnership project with Neuron Mobility. While analyzing the travel spend of shared bike users, they found that such travelers spent considerably more than people who didn’t.
The more they used e-scooters, the higher was their spend in the local economy. They were also able to visit more local attractions than those who chose conventional transportation methods.
The micromobility market currently encompasses 590 companies in Europe, 114 in Asia, 27 in the Middle East, and fewer than 10 in Africa. The number stands at the 22 mark in Latin America. As for North America, over 560 companies offer micromobility products, solutions, and services.
These statistics show micro-mobility going global and make a compelling point in favor of shared bikes becoming the primary mode of short-distance transport in the future. And the truth is the benefits of micro mobility are many. Although sharing electric scooters still have miles to go (literally so) before they become commonplace, here are a few reasons why this is advantageous:
Viable Alternative For Short-distance Travel
E-scooters are easy, convenient, and time-saving—simply download a local bike and scooter sharing app to get started. E-scooters are typically dockless—so you can rent one and drop it off at almost any location within a specified radius. And you can take them anywhere you want, any time you want, albeit for a short distance only.
Because these vehicles are compact and sleek, you can easily travel through traffic or narrow alleyways. They don’t take up much parking space, either. That’s why sharing scooters is an excellent choice for traveling within a city.
That’s the kind of flexibility you will not get if you rent a car or take public transport.
Affordable and Smart Choice
Sharing electric scooters is made for the new-age traveler. You can rent e-scooters by the hour, paying only for the distance you’ve traveled and the time you have used it for.
Forget about taking out a hefty car loan, paying interest, insurance, maintenance, and other frills. Shared mobility gives you the freedom to travel without spending an arm and a leg.
Additionally, depending on where you live, e-scooters may be more affordable than public transport! You could easily rent a shared electric scooter for $1 for the first hour and pay 15 cents per extra minute after that.
So, you can travel to your hotel from the train station and roam around the city for a few dollars. And given the ever-increasing gas prices, sharing scooters is indeed a saving grace for urban commuters.
Better for the Environment
Electric scooters don’t run on fossil fuels. Hence, they have a low carbon footprint. Compared to conventional fuel-run cars, sharing scooters have seven times less carbon dioxide output. Besides reducing air pollution, sharing scooters also cuts down on noise pollution.
And the industry is experiencing continuous innovation that keeps making e-scooters better. Some companies are partnering with manufacturers who want to maximize energy efficiency for these bikes. In certain models, the battery can store excess energy produced during braking to increase its longevity.
On the whole, sharing electric scooters could help smaller cities with a lack of infrastructure and public transport with the hassle-free local conveyance. For bigger, congested cities, it could provide a means for fast transportation.
But, as electric scooter trends will tell you, sharing electric scooters is not without its share of cons.
Problems Affecting Mass Use of E-scooters
Despite their popularity, e-scooters have had their share of debates.
Not everybody can ride e-scooters – although it’s easy to ride one, it’s not entirely safe. Sharing scooters do not have a chassis and, therefore, cannot protect other vehicles or pedestrians who may zoom past the rider.
Although wearing a helmet can provide basic protection against accidents, safety is still the rider’s responsibility. Unless you follow the rules, you can get into nasty accidents.
The other obvious concern is since sharing scooters are dockless; riders can park them just about anywhere. Although they are compact, this could cause clutter in public spaces.
Imagine walking into a beautiful city only to see a bunch of e-scooters taking up space on the sidewalk. Not only could it create a space problem, but it will also mess up the visual aesthetics of the place.
Sharing Scooters: Ideal for Long Distance?
But most of all, the one thing affecting the market is that e-scooters are only suitable for short-distance traveling. They are also not ideal for use in steep and hilly terrains. Unless it’s short-distance travel on a relatively plain surface, these sharing scooters simply cannot be used.
Unless micromobility companies roll out new vehicles for long-distance travel, e-scooters will maintain their fame within the short-distance travel category.
How ANIV is Showing the Way Forward
Aniv is a specialized micro-mobility sharing platform that empowers you to start your own eco-friendly transportation business. Whether you are an entrepreneur seeking to make a difference or a city council board member, we offer a host of services as one of the most pioneering companies in the market today.
From a state-of-the-art app to a dedicated vehicle store, Aniv offers you all the help you need to successfully establish a scooter-sharing company.
If that’s the path you want to take, get in touch with us today!