Informal Transit in Asia: Minibuses and Rickshaws

The development of informal transit systems in Asia varies across countries, making it difficult to present a general pattern. Minibuses and three-wheelers are commonly used in Asian cities.

  • Informal systems in Asian cities are dominated by three-wheelers, which can be motorized or non-motorized. The operators usually lease or own their vehicles. 
  • They often serve first- and last-mile needs of users such as going to markets or schools, carrying food and other goods, or getting to or from drop off points for larger transit systems.
  • Because of their affordability and flexibility to navigate into neigborhood streets, motorcycles and motorcycle taxis are gaining popularity in Sub-Saharan African and Latin American cities.
Market size of auto-rickshaws for selected Indian cities, 2010