Shared mobility is also developing in Australia. The big cities in particular are relying increasingly on car sharing and the number of users is rising nationwide.
Popcar has been one of the Australian providers on the continent’s shared mobility market since 2016. In addition to the topics of environmental protection and sustainability, Popcar also wants to score points with user comfort and service. Popcar relies on the shared mobility platform MOQO.
MOQO has been developed by the company Digital Mobility Solutions GmbH in Aachen, Germany, and is being used by growing numbers of shared mobility providers worldwide.
Car sharing has existed in Australia since the early 2000s. In the first few years, development was slow, not least for cultural reasons. “Australians are traditionally attached to the idea of private car ownership and the independence and privacy that comes with it,” knows Anthony Welsh, Director of Popcar.
For a few years now, however, the market for car sharing has been developing. Today, car sharing in the world’s sixth largest country by area (7.692 million square kilometres) with a population of only about 24.6 million takes place mainly in the capital cities. However, there is a growing appetite for the service in regional centres across the country.
Popcar was founded in 2016. Anthony Welsh explained: “An important motivation for us was to create more competition in the market.
“For a long time, there was little choice in providers for those who wanted to use car sharing. Now that there is competition, people in Australia have better access to all the benefits of car sharing and customers gain from better services.”
Another important motivation for Popcar was and is making a positive sustainability impact. To offset the carbon emissions of their journeys, Popcar users can pay an offset amount. This money is then used, for example, to plant the “Yarra Yarra Biodiversity Corridor”.
Active in the most important regions, offers for private individuals and companies
Popcar is currently operating in Sydney within the City of Sydney, Sutherland Shire, North Sydney, Mosman, Manly and Parramatta regions; in Melbourne with Port Phillip, City of Melbourne, Darebin and Boroondara regions; in Canberra with the Canberra City, Turner, Dickson and Braddon regions; and in Byron Bay and Mullumbimby.
In 2020, Popcar had 180 vehicles, and has plans to increase that number to 300 in 2021 and 500 shortly after. As soon as there is a better charging point infrastructure in Australia, electric vehicles will also be purchased.
Currently, there are already some hybrid vehicles. Popcar often works with city councils to support them in sustainable mobility policies. The support of municipalities is also important to solve the problem of scarce parking spaces.
Popcar users include both private individuals and companies. Popcar offers both user groups differentiated usage and pricing models, oriented towards the frequency of use. Popcar attaches great importance to establishing close working relationships with its customers.
This has resulted in many partnerships with companies from sectors such as hospitality, tourism, hotels, fitness and real estate. One example is the collaboration with Hmlet, a start-up with a platform for co-living.
Hmlet offers co-living space in Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo and Sydney. Popcar provides the matching car-sharing service in Sydney.
Advantages: environment and climate change, better lifestyle and optimal service
Popcar is banking on the fact that interest is also growing in Australia to do more for environmental and climate change as well as to maintain a healthier lifestyle by foregoing the car more often and getting around on foot or by bicycle.
“With car sharing, you use the car when you really need it. That means fewer cars on the roads, less congestion, less carbon emissions. It’s a good thing for everyone,” says Anthony Welsh.
At the same time, Popcar has to convince with very good service, especially in Australia.
Welsh says: “We don’t just give our members the assurance that they are helping the environment and that they are saving money.
“We also offer a spotless and well-maintained premium fleet and very competitive prices. And last but not least, our all-round carefree service and ease of use is an important criterion in convincing more and more Australians to car share.”
The conviction that best service and an optimal user experience are crucial for success was also the reason for Popcar to cooperate with MOQO. Anthony Welsh said: “For us, two factors were decisive: With the MOQO app, we can offer people in Australia the leading solution for shared mobility.
The second reason is the team behind the technology. We have tremendous confidence that they will continue to push their solution to stay at the forefront, for the mutual benefit and the convenience of our members.”
MOQO platform makes car sharing simple
For both car sharing operators and users, the MOQO platform can digitally map all processes necessary for sharing. On the operator’s side, this includes all rental and billing processes, driver’s licence validations, services such as cleaning and recording damage or vehicle conditions, and staff deployment or accounting procedures.
After downloading the app and registering, users benefit from simple, convenient handling and high transparency. They can see at any time where certain vehicles are available for them. They can book spontaneously or reserve in advance. They always have an overview of all services used and their costs.
Popcar customers in Australia will be able to use the MOQO app from May 2021.