A new integrated transport app available in the West Midlands allows people to find and book seamless travel across various modes of public transport.
Known as Whim, it has been launched by Finnish company MaaS Global in partnership with Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), National Express, ride-sharing service Gett, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, bike-share scheme Nextbike and other transport providers.
The app allows commuters and travellers to book a complete journey, from bus and tram to taxi, car, and bike hire, and get their tickets in a single place.
Whim already operates in the Finnish capital, Helsinki, where it has 20,000 registered users.
Now, the company is looking for 500 travellers in the Midlands to sign up to test the app before a full rollout in the summer, the Birmingham Post reports.
Three pricing options are available:
– Pay as you go;
– Whim Everyday for £99 per month, including unlimited public transport with taxis and car hire; and
– Whim Unlimited for £349 per month, with unlimited public transport, all taxi rides within a three-mile radius of your location and up to 30 days car hire per month.
“We want to challenge the way people start to think about their journeys and let them see that vehicle ownership doesn’t have to be the only way forward,” said Whim founder Sampo Hietanen.
“We’re certainly not anti-car — we offer access to cars when needed, via taxis or through hire. But we are showing people that they don’t need to be so reliant on car ownership. Once people realise this, the benefits are huge — less traffic, less pollution, less stressful journeys, more space in our towns and cities thanks to fewer cars parked on the road.”
Hietanen and other experts recently appeared before the House of Commons transport committee to discuss the potential of Mobility as a Service (MaaS).