Launched in June 2019, the SNCF Assistant aims at becoming the multimodal application reference in France. For the very first time, Uber has agreed to be on a third-party platform by engaging in a partnership with the SNCF after nearly a year of negotiations. Focus on this exclusive partnership.
An historical partnership
As we have seen in our infographic, the SNCF aims to become the reference MaaS application in France. By engaging in a partnership with Uber, the SNCF is taking a big step towards achieving its goals. Presented this Tuesday 16 June at Ground Control in Paris, it will now be possible, by the end of the year, to book and pay for a VFH directly from the application.
Alexandre Viros, General Manager of SNCF e-voyageurs, said “With this partnership, the SNCF Assistant is taking a new step forward. Uber is a key player in urban mobility in the Île-de-France region, and our partnership is a major step forward in achieving our offer to meet the demands of our millions of customers. This enables us to support our passengers with the best of shared mobility, accessible in a single application, from information to purchase”. This historic partnership is also of interest to Uber. Indeed, according to Jonathan Levy, Uber France’s sales director, making the VFH service accessible on another application will attract occasional customers: “It is a complementary offer. Regular customers will remain on the Uber app”.
How does it work?
First, the user will need to have an SNCF Connect account and update his SNCF Assistant application. As in the Uber application, “the user has real-time availability information of the nearest conductors, estimated waiting and journey times and the estimated price of the journey”. Once the journey has been validated, the user is informed by SMS of the arrival of his driver and his contact details. He will also be able to find the exact address of the meeting place on the application. It will also be possible to retrieve, from the application, the history of his fares.
A partnership that reinforces the Assistant’s offer
As a reminder, the SNCF Assistant’s application already had a taxi offer available in 192 cities in mainland France. It also has the carpooling offer of BlaBlaLines and Karos since last November, which allows carpooling between home and work. It is also possible to take advantage of the “Bus Direct Paris Airport”, which provides an easy connection between Paris and Paris’ airports and train stations. The application also allows you to find out about RATP traffic in real-time and to be informed about the availability of Vélib or CityScoot.
By using NFC technology, it is possible to buy your TER ticket from the wizard as well as validate it (except Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes). It is also possible in the Strasbourg urban area to buy and validate your public transport ticket from the application. On June 20, it will be possible for Île-de-France residents to top up Navigo passes and T+ tickets using the application. It is very likely that the SNCF Assistant intends to expand his urban mobility services to include scooters and electric bicycles. As Lime is a key partner of Uber, it is possible that the negotiations will be much easier for the SNCF and that the latter will expand its services.