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Via launches new on-demand public transport service in Austria with VVT

March 2, 2022 (Wattens, Austria) — On March 1, Via and VVT launched RegioFlink, the new public transport offering in Wattens, Austria. RegioFlink is a technology-based, on-demand transport service that only runs when and where it is needed, filling the gaps in existing public transport infrastructure. RegioFlink complements and extends VVT's public transport network in a flexible and sustainable way.

With RegioFlink, two on-demand vehicles will run as a supplement to existing public transport services, allowing greater convenience for locals and visitors in Wattens to connect with essential and leisure destinations.

RegioFlink is powered by software from Via, the global leader in TransitTech. Via’s intelligent algorithms allow RegioFlink passengers to book an on-demand ride by app or phone. It then directs them to a nearby “virtual bus stop” within a short walking distance for pick-up, and takes them to a stop close to their destination. This model allows for quick, efficient shared trips that provide more flexibility than traditional transportation options with fixed routes and schedules. Several passengers can share one vehicle, and wheelchair-accessible vehicles will be available.

VVT Managing Director Alexander Jug on the launch of the first on-demand transport in Tyrol: "RegioFlink is a flexible addition to the existing public transport system. This brings us another step closer to establishing a holistic mobility system and the possibility of reducing individual transport."

The municipality of Wattens is treading innovative mobility paths for Tyrol together with VVT. Mayor Thomas Oberbeirsteiner is pleased to be the first municipality in Tyrol to offer this modern service as part of a pilot project: "Wattens is an innovative municipality. And because innovation means thinking about the future, I am very pleased that we are introducing Tyrol's first RegioFlink with VVT. We need creative mobility offers to meet today's requirements of sustainable mobility. We can now offer the population of Wattens, as well as people commuting to Wattens, a flexible and sustainable transport service for the last mile."

Service times and costs

Regioflink runs in the entire municipal area of Wattens from Monday to Friday from 8:30 to 6:00. There are countless stops and two vehicles that will take passengers quickly and comfortably from A to B at a cost-saving public transport fare. In addition to the basic fare of € 1, there is a zone fare (adults € 1.30, senior citizens, young people, people with disabilities € 0.90, family € 1.30). For holders of a valid VVT ticket for Wattens, the zone fare does not apply. The zone tariff is generally waived for all journeys to and from Fritzens-Wattens station — this means that the RegioFlink journey only costs € 1 in this case, regardless of having a VVT ticket.

Bookings are made via app — uncomplicated and fast. With Via, which provides passenger and driver apps as well as the intelligent routing system, VVT has an advanced partner for on-demand solutions in public transport. The technology allows to bundle rides of different passengers in a particularly efficient and dynamic way.

“We are proud to partner with VVT to introduce Via's on-demand public transportation platform into the Austrian market through the launch of RegioFlink, which uses software to expand access to affordable, flexible, and sustainable transportation for residents and tourists in Wattens,” said Chris Snyder, Via’s European CEO. “We look forward to working with VVT and Wattens to show how tech-enabled mobility can solve transportation challenges for other communities across Austria.”

Sustainable vision for the future

In addition to strengthening public transport, the long-term goal of VVT is to develop a holistic mobility system. Innovative, flexible mobility services such as RegioFlink complement traditional public transport networks through solving transportation access gaps in the first-and-last mile for passengers, ultimately incentivizing more passengers to use public transport versus private cars.

VVT Managing Director Alexander Jug sums it up: "The pilot project RegioFlink in Wattens will be continuously analyzed and evaluated over one whole year. Based on these learnings, we will be able to optimally prepare the basis for a further roll-out of RegioFlink in other municipalities in Tyrol. In our vision of the future, RegioFlink represents a sensible, flexible addition to the overall mobility concept of VVT — depending on the requirements of the respective municipality."