Bolt, building the future of micromobility in Europe
October 8, 2021|
4 min read
Bolt was founded in 2013 by then 19-year-old Markus Villig. Today, it is Europe’s first super-app with the mission to make urban mobility more affordable, safe, and sustainable.
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Bolt has 75 million customers in 45 countries across Europe and Africa. The company offers a range of mobility services, including ride-hailing, shared cars and scooters, and food and grocery delivery. The company entered Malta in 2017 with its ride-hailing service and launched Bolt Food and electric scooters in 2020.
Currently, Bolt offers micromobility services in more than 130 cities across 20 countries in Europe. This makes the company the largest micromobility provider in Europe. Bolt has been working on making moving around cities easier, faster and more reliable. The company strongly believes in micromobility and that it can solve a lot of problems for cities. In fact, on average, one in four Bolt rides globally is less than three kilometres, which is a perfect distance to cover with a light electric vehicle.
Bolt’s main objective has been to partner with cities to create a solution that works for the city and its citizens and provide the most affordable green personal transportation options.
Currently, Bolt is the most affordable player, offering the lightest yet most durable scooters in the market, making it the most environmentally sustainable vehicle across all operators.
However, lately, the appearance of scooters on Malta's streets have sparked a public debate around the reckless behaviour of some scooter riders. The discussion also started revolving around the safety and responsibility of users while riding shared electric scooters.
Bolt puts the safety of its users and the community as its top priority. In every country it operates, the company partners with local authorities and runs various campaigns to inform its users about riding scooters safely. For instance, Bolt offers in-app support to all users and has implemented several safety features that can be used directly in the app. Bolt’s Safety Toolkit includes speed limitations for beginners, safety tips and local rules. Users can also report badly parked scooters just by scanning a QR code. A video campaign also explains how to scoot responsibly without causing any disturbances to other road users.
In Malta, Bolt actively works with local authorities and councils to tackle safety issues such as congestion and pollution and help cities shift towards greener urban transport.
“Our mission is to offer safe, affordable, and eco-friendly mobility solutions,” said a representative of Bolt in Malta. “We are doing our utmost to make this experience as safe and convenient as possible for everyone. Where issues are being reported to us, we are happy to help resolve the problems. However, it is of utmost importance that riders responsibly comply with any regulations and rules when using e-scooters. At Bolt, we strongly believe in micromobility and that it can solve many problems for cities. We’ve always been working on making moving around cities easier, faster and more reliable, so getting into scooters as a flexible, people-friendly urban transportation mode is a natural step for us.”
According to the UN, 68 per cent of the world’s population is projected to live in urban areas by 2050. Therefore, the race is on the cities to respond, and Malta is no exception. In order to cope with rising urbanization and counter the global climate crisis, cities need to find ways to support sustainable development and growth. The core of this strategy is a country’s mobility system.
Electric scooters help improve mobility in cities, and shared e-scooter services will encourage citizens to use small and sustainable modes for their daily mobility needs and provide a further boost to all active and small modes of transport.
Many global cities have already started integrating sustainable commuting solutions focused on automated, connected, electrified, and shared mobility. These solutions make transportation not only affordable but also accessible by all. When used, driven, and parked properly, e-scooters have the power to transform whole urban spaces and drastically reduce the carbon footprint of a country and improve the overall traffic situation and quality of life. By providing e-scooters at affordable prices, Bolt makes e-scooters accessible to everyone, encouraging a quicker switch to eco-friendly transportation.
Mobility solutions like shared electric scooters are exactly what Malta needs to resolve its traffic and environmental issues. As it turns out, electric scooters do have a very positive impact. Many people happily choose to ride an electric scooter instead of requesting a car ride when given a chance. So the main question remains for the people, are we ready to make Malta a better place to live by accepting new sustainable mobility solutions, complying with legislation and being respectful towards each other by responsibly using shared electric scooters?
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