Google Maps adds crowdedness predictions for public transport

Google maps

Google is introducing a new feature to its Maps app that will help commuters hoping to avoid packed trains and buses during rush hour.

Crowdedness predictions, which work out how busy trains, buses and Tube journeys are likely to be based on past rides, are coming to 18 cities and towns across the UK.

The option is rolling out on to iOS and Android devices in almost 200 locations across the world, including London, Cardiff and Edinburgh, designed to help travellers make an informed decision about whether or not they wish to squeeze on to a congested service or wait for a quieter one after.

Google Maps

Google Maps adds crowdedness predictions (Google/PA)

Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Coventry, Crawley, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle, Nottingham, Oxford, Reading, Sheffield and Southampton are also on the list of places across the UK set to receive Google Maps’ crowdedness predictions.

Earlier this year, a study by the Labour Party claimed overcrowding on trains in the UK has hit one of its highest levels and is set to get worse, with the most overcrowded train routes on average 187% over capacity.

The most overcrowded route in 2018 was the 4.22am train from Glasgow Central to Manchester Airport, with twice the number of passengers as the service was designed to carry, the study suggested.

Google is also rolling out live traffic delays for buses in locations where it does not already have access to real-time information direct from local transit agencies, informing users whether their bus is running late or on time.

The UK’s most overcrowded trains in 2017 according to the Department of Transport.

  1. 7.16am East Grinstead to London Bridge (640 capacity /1,366 passengers*)
  2. 7.55am Cambridge to London King’s Cross (202 capacity / 426 passengers*)
  3. 5.08pm Sutton to St Albans City (391 capacity / 758 passengers*)
  4. 6.57am Brighton to Bedford (630 capacity / 1,215 passengers*)
  5. 4pm Manchester Airport to Edinburgh (191 capacity / 357 passengers*)
  6. 7.27am Reigate to London Bridge (669 capacity /1,233 passengers*)
  7. 5.18pm London Paddington to Oxford (242 capacity / 445 passengers*)
  8. 4.22am Glasgow Central to Manchester Airport (191 capacity / 344 passengers*)
  9. 4.26pm Bedford to Brighton (372 capacity / 669 passengers*)
  10. 6.13pm London Euston to Birmingham New Street (412 capacity / 729 passengers*)

* Number of passengers carried at the train’s most crowded point

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