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Personalized Urban Transit Lets You Choose Your Route

Personalized Urban Transit Lets You Choose Your Route

Image source: kutsuplus.fi

In a cross between a city bus and a private taxi, a new bus service in Helsinki, Finland, allows riders to set their own routes and pay for them, right from their smartphone.

Kutsuplus is the name of the service, which prices its trips somewhere between the cost of a taxi and that of a public bus, and ten of their minibuses are currently in service from 7:30am to 6:30pm in the city.

“The ordering and control system of the Kutsuplus service is fully automated. It allows you to order trips even only a few minutes before you want to start your trip. After taking a Kutsuplus ride, every passenger gets a receipt by email.” – Kutsuplus

Using an app, potential riders can set their desired route (pickup and dropoff points) and reserve their seat almost right up to departure time (website says “tens of minutes”). Payment is also handled through the app, with users transferring money to their Trip Wallet via a bank or credit card. Once the trip is set, the user gets an order confirmation as their ticket, along with walking directions from their location to the pickup point.

The minibuses can hold up to 9 passengers, who will all be going to stops along a route that will bring all of them in the same general direction, and riders are able to view estimated arrival times from a screen inside the bus.

This type of on-demand route has advantages over the city bus, which stops at every spot on its route, and only goes on one route, period, requiring riders to often change buses and wait at yet another stop. This allows riders using the Kutsuplus service to get to their destination quicker and more directly than city buses, while costing less than a taxi service would.

While there are just ten of the buses in service at the moment, the company plans to put another 35 on the streets in the near future.

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