Liftango partners with HITRANS to provide on-demand transit services

The Highlands and Islands Transport Partnership (HITRANS), a regional transport organization in the north of Scotland, has partnered with on-demand shared transport company, Liftango, to provide sustainable and accessible public transport services to residents of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. This strategic partnership will leverage on-demand transportation (DRT) software to address transportation inequities, reduced funding, and lack of commercial travel in rural areas of the country.

“Digital technology such as Liftango’s helps us provide fairer transportation across the region. The flexibility and convenience of dynamic DRT it provides stood out. We look forward to the ongoing partnership as we roll out services to our local authority and fleet operator partners,” said Neil MacRae, HITRANS Partnership Manager.

The vast majority of public transport on Scottish islands does not operate on a commercial basis. Commercial services are limited to a few of the larger conurbations and some longer arterial routes on the continent. Public and community transport is almost entirely funded by a combination of services contracted by local authorities or volunteers, with some subsidies from local or central government.

The cost of providing these services is high and funding has not increased to match this. The COVID-19 pandemic, the current level of public transport and the existing model have only increased these challenges.

“We see our platform being able to help bring transport to communities across the Highlands and Islands. The flexibility and availability of transportation options has been a challenge over the years for many area residents. They will now be able to access fair transport services by making on-demand reservations in advance or at the last minute at a time that best suits their schedules,” said David Mawhinney, Director of Liftango Europe.

In response to these challenges, HITRANS and Liftango have collaborated to roll out DRT services to local authorities and fleet operators in the region. The deployment will allow multiple operators to independently administer their services exclusively through a single digital platform provided by Liftango. These services range from fully DRT services in a specific or flexible geographic area on designated days to hybrid services that operate on a pre-booking model and serve particular destinations.

HITRANS and Liftango will facilitate sustainable transport in the region by improving access to public transport and solving transport inequalities for residents of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland.

Melvin Z. Madore