A seed-stage company in the UK has developed a system that collates requests for point-to-point travel from a dispersed set of travellers via SMS (they text-message by cellphone their destination postcode to the system), and then packages travellers going in the same direction into one vehicle at a discounted fare.
Texxi (“Texxi, the taxi you text”) is a demand-responsive transit brokerage (DRT Brokerage) system.
Prospective passengers send their postcode to the Texxi SMS number. The system then aggregates other passengers wanting to go to the same area and confirms details of the taxi driver’s name and badge number to the passengers.
Passengers are instructed to go to pre-determined pickup points to meet the driver who will have received a text confirming each passenger’s booking reference.
In the prototype demonstration in Liverpool, each passenger will pre-pay a flat fee of £5.
Benefits of this approach include:
Lower passenger fares for point-to-point travel.
Increased revenue for the taxi driver for essentially the same work.
Reduction of potential CO2 emissions and fuel consumption as the total number of trips are reduced.