UBus and Buser are mobility platforms popularly known as "Uber dos busses". Android and iPhone (iOS) apps offer tickets for urban, intercity and interstate travel at generally lower prices than those offered by traditional bus companies.
Services promise up to 60% savings due to collaborative chartering, which is gaining visibility as it promises to reduce traffic from other vehicles on the streets and roads. The modality, however, has already generated controversies regarding its legality. Check out some questions and answers about transport by app.
buses per application UBus and Metra are considered clandestine in SP
UBus is a transport service by application, nicknamed "Uber dos bus" Photo: Rubens Achilles / TechTudo
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What and how does collaborative chartering work?
Buser promises to offer bus fares up to 60% cheaper than bus companies Photo: Reproduction / Lvia Dmaso
Mobility services bridge the gap between travelers and transport companies. They are the ones who charter the buses to make the trips and sell the tickets on their platforms. This usually ensures a cheaper trip, as there is an apportionment among users to pay for the bus rental. The more people traveling to the same destination on the date, the lower the fare.
The user can see which trips should be confirmed from the search volume for the itinerary and the most popular dates. Confirmation depends on whether a minimum number of passengers is reached, in addition to the availability of bus companies.
How was the payment made?
Buser allows payment by credit card or bank slip Photo: Photo: Reproduction / Lvia Dmaso
At Buser, payment can be made through a credit card or bank slip. The second option is only valid for reservations up to 72 hours prior to departure. In UBus, tickets are paid by credit card or BOM transport card and are validated by reading the QR Code on the bus.
Which companies are behind the services?
The Buser website informs that transportation companies are experienced in eventual road charter and with professional drivers. The app ensures that vehicles are inspected and have documentation on time.
In addition, the partners have federal authority authorizations, such as the National Land Transportation Agency (ANTT). UBus also ensures that transport companies providing services are legalized.
How do boarding and disembarking occur?
Travel pick-up and drop-off locations are determined by Buser Photo: Reproduction / Lvia Dmaso
The place of embarkation and disembarkation may vary according to the mobility service used. In Buser, the point set by the app itself. Already in UBus, there are three options: route determined by the operator, the user or door to door on demand. The app also offers seating suggestions, informs the time of boarding and displays a forecast of landing.
What are the main rules of use?
The use of the platforms must be done exclusively by individuals. To schedule a trip, I need to do a simple registration, which can be done through a Facebook account. At Buser, babies and children under 16 must have a single seat reservation. Children up to one year old and their months should also have a ticket, in addition to traveling in the car seat baby comfort. The transport of pets is not allowed.
UBus provides public transportation in the city of So Paulo and ABC paulista Photo: Reproduo / Lvia Dmaso
The Municipal Secretariat of Transport Mobility (SMT) of the city of So Paulo recently considered UBus a clandestine transport service, claiming that the company does not have the accreditation to do so. On the other hand, startup It claims to be a technology company that has no vehicles, and only mediates between passengers and legalized transport operators. Still, the service has been suspended by the city of So Paulo since October 10, 2019.
Buser won the right to operate in the state of Rio de Janeiro in court against a lawsuit filed by the Brazilian Association of Passenger Ground Transportation Companies (Abrati). The company still has at least eight more lawsuits for the same reason in the states of So Paulo, Minas Gerais and Paran.
Buser's focus on inter-city and interstate travel more comfortably and at a lower price than bus companies. UBus proposes to make trips inside the city, such as from home to work, with more convenience, as it offers air conditioning and Wi-Fi, for example.
The app offers three modes: the line that has a fixed route, the charter where the route, day and time are predetermined by the user, and the door-to-door module that, on demand, meets flexible route requests. For now, the service is only available in So Paulo. Both use chartered vehicles to perform the mobility service.
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