How to Create the Perfect Last-Mile Commute
If you live in a city or urban area, you probably travel the last mile daily. Research from the United States Census Bureau shows that 143 million Americans aged 16 and above commute daily.
The problem is that public transportation is marred with challenges and often doesn’t deliver on the last mile. For instance, depending on where you live, you may have to grapple with delays, overcrowding, poor hygiene, lack of safety, and other last-mile commute challenges.
On the flip side, if you own a private car, you may have to contend with a lot of frustrations, including snarled traffic and challenges finding secure parking. On top of that, your expenses could rise considerably due to fuel and parking costs.
It’s no surprise that Americans are opting for affordable, stress-free last-mile commute solutions. This guide will introduce you to the best solutions for the first or last mile of your daily commute.
Yet, before we begin, let’s define the “last-mile” commute.
What is the Last Mile Commute?
The last mile, sometimes referred to as the “first and last mile,” is the distance a commuter needs to travel from a station stop to their destination or vice versa.
Your average trip can be broken down into three separate legs.
The first trip is usually your first connection from your home. The main trip, is often facilitated by a mode of transport like public transport, and the last mile connects you from the bus stop to your place of work.
A recent American Community Survey report found that over 46% of public transportation commuters prefer buses for the main trip over other forms of travel. However, transit stops often leave commuters at a preset, high-traffic location, requiring them to take an alternative transportation means to complete the last leg of their trip.
What’s the Problem with the Last Mile?
Local governments and transit agencies are yet to implement a feasible solution to the last mile challenge that will allow commuters to be transported from their homes to their place of work or any other destination. And this is a problem that needs to be addressed before the American population increases.
According to the US Department of Transportation, America’s population is expected to increase by 70 million in the next three decades, with mid-sized cities growing exponentially. This would lead to many issues for the transport industry, including traffic congestion, limited parking space, and a lack of resourcing to facilitate last-mile solutions.
What are the Best Last Mile Solutions?
Bicycles, scooters, and other micro-mobility solutions are the perfect (and sustainable) solution. Corporate shuttles are also a good fit as they provide convenient last-mile services with convenient pick-up spots from main transport hubs.
Recommended Last Mile Mobility Options
E-scooters are the perfect solution to the last-mile problem. They provide a great way to close the last-mile gap because they are fast, cheap to run, and easy to ride.
McKinsey’s research on micromobility in Munich found that the average scooter makes about six trips a day, covering around 1.3 kilometers per trip. Another advantage of using electric scooters is that they are environmentally friendly, making them a sustainable option.
Electric skateboards are another perfect solution to the last mile problem. Just like scooters, this type of micromobility is fast, compact, and easy to run. They are also eco-friendly, making them a sustainable solution.
The range of electric skateboards is wide, and usually cheaper than many other types of micromobility. A good electric skateboard will set you back around $200, while e-scooters cost upwards of $600.
Electric bikes are another viable solution to the last-mile problem. These environmentally-friendly rideables have grown in popularity due to their convenience, speed, and easy maintenance requirements.
Big-name companies like Bluebikes offer connected bike-sharing services to ease the last-mile transportation problem. Other companies, like Citi Bike in New York City, have joined the bike-sharing game, offering bikes and system data for everyone to see.
Electric bikes are an excellent option for various reasons. First, they have a decent range and can easily be ridden as conventional bikes. Having the option to switch between riding modes is great for those who want to stay fit.
Walking never grows out of fashion. Studies show that 2.7% of Americans walk to work. Of these, 6.5% are in Honolulu, 5.9% in New York, and 5.2% in Boston. Walking is eco-friendly, which helps reduce your carbon footprint. It’s also a great way to stay physically fit.
Every day, thousands of employees are transported to their jobs via private corporate shuttles provided by their employers. Hired by companies of all sizes, these shuttles help solve the last mile problem that plagues many employees. Providing employee last-mile commute shuttles helps alleviate regular traffic and problems associated with public transportation.
Leading corporate shuttle service providers, including HQ’s corporate shuttles, offer advanced features that make travel easier and stress-free. With robust features like secure Wi-Fi and charging ports, last-mile shuttle travel transforms commuting into a productive experience.
There are so many solutions to solve the last mile problem. From scooters to electric bikes to skateboards and corporate shuttles, we’re spoilt for choices when it comes to choosing the best last-mile solution. Your choice of the best last-mile solution should depend on your budget, the commute distance, the type of city that you live in, and your lifestyle.
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