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Metlink On Demand Bus-hailing Service To Be Extended After Successful Trial

A public transport service for the ride-hailing era is expanding in reach. Metlink On Demand, the app-based, demand-driven bus service, will cover a larger area following a decision by Greater Wellington councillors on 22 June.

Metlink On Demand finished a successful 12-month trial on 16 May, having completed over 40,000 trips for the community. The trial will now be extended for another year, and the service will be expanded from Tawa and Grenada North to include Porirua CBD. As the trial continues, Metlink will also assess the viability of extending the service to Aotea and Cannons Creek.

Greater Wellington Transport Chair Thomas Nash is looking forward to the On Demand service becoming available to more passengers.

"Metlink On Demand is an accessible and flexible form of public transport that offers people a convenient, climate conscious alternative to personal vehicles. Passenger satisfaction with the service has surpassed our target, averaging 96%. We are delighted that Metlink’s commitment to modern, convenient transport is resonating with communities.”

To use the service, passengers request a vehicle with the Metlink On Demand app. A wheelchair accessible, 14-seater bus is allocated to the passenger, shared with others whose journeys are suitably similar. The bus picks up and drops off passengers at approximately 600 locations or ‘virtual stops’, mostly in areas without fixed route services.

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A trip rate of $2.50 is paid through the app, making it a familiar – and cheaper – experience for anyone who uses ride-hailing apps such as Uber or Ola.

Fiona Abbott, Acting Metlink Group Manager, says the on-demand service provides another path to mode shift, one of Greater Wellington’s targets in the Regional Public Transport Plan.

“Metlink On Demand connects commuters to the rail network, reducing their reliance on cars. It’s also proved popular with parents, children and the elderly; passenger numbers continued to rise throughout the trial, connecting people to schools, shops and social events.

“The extension of the Metlink On Demand trial is a positive step towards reducing our region’s emissions. Greater Wellington is investing in modern transport solutions to ensure a sustainable future.”

Government is considering a bill which proposes to amend the definition of public transport to include on-demand public transport. This bill would make On Demand eligible for funding through the National Land Transport Fund, supporting Metlink’s ability to establish On Demand services in additional areas.

Passengers can download the Metlink On Demand app for free from their mobile device’s app store, or by visiting

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