Berlin, 27 October 2020 - SHARE NOW, market leader of free-floating car sharing, and the consulting and research company Mobility Institute Berlin, mib for short, have published a joint paper examining the role of car sharing in the first months of the Corona pandemic. The paper is based on the mib's April 2020 study "Beyond the immediate crisis” and advocates multimodal mobility systems. The results of the study show that the demand for car sharing was less affected by the initial crisis than the demand for public transport. Car sharing enables people to have short-term access to a mobility option perceived as low-risk - the car - without having to commit to owning a private car in the long term. Additionally, the car sharing usage shifted to the urban periphery and away from rush hours.
More protection, less congestion
"Car sharing offers citizens a means of transport perceived as low-risk in the short or medium term - the car," says Olivier Reppert, CEO of SHARE NOW. "Car sharing also demonstrably relieves cities of emissions and reduces traffic in urban areas. Car sharing thus helps to solve the dilemma between individual risk prevention and social congestion pressure."
The paper also looks at the extent to which car sharing and public transport demand changed during the initial crisis and draws a comparison between the cities Berlin and Hamburg. It becomes clear that the demand for car sharing was less affected by the crisis. The use of SHARE NOW already returned to around 90% of pre-crisis demand by mid-June. However, as the risk of infection declines, an increased return to public transport can be expected.
Shift to urban periphery and away from rush hours
A closer look at Berlin also shows that in the first months of the Corona pandemic, car sharing was used in a different way in terms of time and region than before the pandemic. The activity of SHARE NOW customers increasingly shifted to the urban periphery and declined sharply in the morning and evening hours. The period between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. was far less affected by the decline in demand during the crisis. One reason for this is that a large part of the population worked from home.
Interplay of mobility offers improves quality of life
The study "Beyond the immediate crisis” advocates multimodal mobility offers such as car sharing. "Offers such as car sharing complement public transport services and offer people the flexibility and security they need to get around the city, even in times of a pandemic," says Dr. Jörn Richert of the mib. It is important to look at transport as an overall system. "The combination of public transport and car sharing in particular can be a long-term means of making urban space sustainable. This requires interfaces that make it quick and easy for customers to switch between different options of transport," says Dr. Richert. SHARE NOW also sees itself as an addition to public transport. "In many cities we already have very successful cooperation’s with public transport", emphasizes Olivier Reppert, CEO of SHARE NOW. "We want to make our cities more liveable in the long term. We can only achieve this through the interaction of several mobility offers".