Public Transportation & Mobility Services

Public transportation constitutes the backbone of shared ground transportation around the world. Rail, bus, and metro systems move millions of people every day. Public transportation can often offer more affordable and environmentally sustainable transportation and be more efficient at moving large numbers of people than individual transport alternatives, such as passenger cars. Mobility services have emerged as a growing force in the shared transportation market in recent years, enabled by the widespread adoption of smartphones. Mobility services, including ride-hailing services or bicycle and electric scooter hire schemes, can offer more individualized destinations and schedules than traditional public transportation services, which rely on more rigid schedules and routes.

Region with the highest number of passengers using metro systems
Asia-Pacific
Ride-sharing market size worldwide
96.9bn USD
Ride-hailing and taxi users worldwide
1.3bn

Market Size

Increasing demand for mobility is growing the shared transport sector

Global shared mobility market size forecast from 2017 to 2027, by region (in billion U.S. dollars)

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The global population is increasingly mobile, and this trend is reflected in the projected demand for public transportation and mobility services over the coming decades. Mobility services, still a relatively new and dynamic market, are projected to grow particularly strongly in the coming years as operators move into new geographic markets, establish themselves in existing markets, and explore and create new services.

High-speed rail
Public transportation in Hong Kong
Public transportation in Germany

Market segments

Public transportation meets the sharing economy

Users of selected segments of the mobility services market worldwide from 2018 to 2027 (in millions)

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Various mobility services and some hybrid solutions increasingly supplement public transportation systems. While public transportation is usually publicly run or contracted, mobility services, offering more flexibility, are typically operated by private companies. Yet, boundaries between the two are blurring as public transport providers begin to provide publicly operated demand-responsive transport (DRT) as hybrid solutions for marginal routes or specialized transport.

Shared Mobility Market Outlook
Urban public transportation in China
Smart Cities

Industry trends

Can public transport relieve some of the pressures on cities?

World's busiest metro networks in 2019 and 2020, ranked by number of trips (in millions)

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Urbanization and increasing car ownership as global trends are substantially affecting congestion, air quality, and the quality of life in cities and towns. The added impact of passenger cars on the climate has refocused political attention on public transportation as a solution. This is leading to a trend towards investment in new public transport infrastructure, upgrading of existing systems, and incentives for riders, such as lower prices, to draw more people to public transportation.

Public transit in the U.S.
The Deutschlandticket
Public transportation in the Netherlands

Industry leaders

The ride-hailing giants

Number of rides by Uber worldwide from Q2 2017 to Q1 2023 (in millions)

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Founded in 2009, Uber has become a global player with operations worldwide. Uber started as a ride-hailing company and, despite legal challenges, expanded into food delivery and courier services. Lyft is Uber's most significant rival in the United States. Meanwhile, DiDi dominates the market in China.

Mobility services in Japan
Uber
Lyft

Regional overview

Filling the gaps in the public transport network

Ride-sharing market size worldwide in 2022 and 2028 (in billion U.S. dollars)

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The prevalence and popularity of public transportation and mobility services vary widely across the world. Transport infrastructure investment decisions have long-lasting effects that shape regional and local transport availability and influence people's transport choices over decades. Particularly in regions where public transport availability has been limited or not kept up with demand for shared transport, mobility services have been able to fill some of these gaps.

Ride-hailing in Asia Pacific
High-speed rail in China
Transport infrastructure in Australia

State of the industry

  • eMobility: in-depth market analysis
  • Uber Technologies
  • Lyft
  • Public transport in the United Kingdom
  • Active and micromobility in the United States
  • Public transportation in Germany
  • Public transit in the United States
  • Urban public transport in India
  • Ridesharing in Australia

Industry Scope

The public transportation and mobility services category provides information on global, national, and regional public transport and mobility services usage, infrastructure, as well as the general mobility-as-a-service market. The information is complemented with key financial data on the market leaders in these segments. Passenger rail, while considered to be public transportation, is also covered separately under the rail category on the Statista platform.

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