Examining Ride-hailing Use Pre- and Post-COVID

Research Team: Giovanni Circella (lead), Patrick Loa

UC Campus(es): UC Davis

Problem Statement: The introduction of ride-hailing services (such as those offered by Uber and Lyft) had a transformative impact on travel. The availability of ride-hailing has the potential to improve both mobility and accessibility; however, ride-hailing may also be increasing vehicle-miles traveled (VMT), congestion, and greenhouse gas emissions. While the number of ride-hail trips has significantly grown since these services were first introduced about a decade ago, this growth was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic also had a disruptive impact on travel behavior, including a decline in the use of shared modes (including public transit and ride-hailing) and an increase in the use of vehicles and active modes. Given the benefits and negative externalities associated with ride-hailing before the pandemic, and the disruptive impacts of the pandemic on travel behavior, it is crucial to understand the potential long-term impacts of the pandemic on ride-hailing use. This understanding can offer insights into the potential environmental and equity impacts of ride-hailing services during the post-COVID periods. Additionally, it is important to understand the factors influencing the decision to use pooled ride-hailing, given the potential of shared trips to mitigate the negative externalities associated with ride-hailing.

Project Description: The researchers will analyze longitudinal data collected by the 3 Revolutions Future Mobility program at ITS-Davis. The dataset includes data collected on an approximately annual basis since 2018, with the most recent survey administered in Fall 2023. The longitudinal nature of this dataset offers a unique opportunity to examine how ride-hailing use has changed from the pre-COVID, COVID, and post-COVID periods. The researchers will complete three tasks as part of this project. The first task involves a comparison of ride-hailing use in the pre-COVID and post-COVID periods. The second task consists of an exploration of the persistence of the impacts of the pandemic on ride-hailing use in the post-COVID period. Finally, the third task will use data from the Fall 2023 survey to investigate pooled ride-hailing use in the post-COVID period.

Status: In Progress

Budget: $44,151