New 'share-a-ride service to rival Uber will launch soon in Milton Keynes

Milton Keynes will be the fourth city globally to have the scheme
Milton Keynes will be the fourth city globally to have the scheme

A new share-a-ride service is set to offer cut price travel to people in Milton Keynes.

ViaVan is joining forces with Mercedes-Benz to launch the eco-friendly and congestion busting scheme.

Tipped to be a cheap new rival to Uber, the service means passengers can share vehicles with other travelling in the same direction.

Milton Keynes will be the fourth city globally to have the scheme, which has already proved a succes in London, Amsterdam and Berlin.

ViaVan CEO Chris Snyder said: “Milton Keynes is an innovation-forward city and we’re delighted to launch this ground-breaking on-demand service, providing residents with a convenient, affordable, and congestion-reducing dynamic transportation alternative.

He added: “Over the next few years, we’re increasingly going to see cities and towns asking how they can provide their residents with transportation that provides the same ease and convenience as private car ownership, and yet still achieves the same environmental and congestion-reducing benefits mass transit.”

MK Council’s transport head Steve Hayes said: “MK is a great place for transport initiatives with its fast moving grid roads, unique Redway network and a history of trialling new technologies like the driverless pods...ViaVan fits in perfectly with our aims to offer a wide range of travel options to everyone.”

He added: “Sharing journeys is something we fully support as one of our key objectives is to reduce our carbon footprint and reduce traffic growth so that MK remains easy and quick to travel around as it continues to grow rapidly".

ViaVan scheme started in London in April this year. At first the company offered a discount with all rides in Zone 1 of central London costing just £3.

The service does not offer individual rides for just one fare. Instead it will match a customer up with other passengers travelling to the same place at a similar time, and the total cost will be split.

Since launching in London, ViaVan has already provided more than 2.5 million shared rides. Commuters say the service is particularly beneficial.