13 Notable Transportation APIs

Be it road, rail, sea, air, sidewalk, or bike path, the transportation industry has undergone a major transformation in the way people are getting to and from places. New technology such as wireless networks, artificial intelligence, connected vehicles, video intelligence, GPS tracking, dashcams, and crowdsourced and predictive traffic data have commuters, fleet operators, and developers battling carbon emissions with applications that make getting around more convenient, more efficient, and more sustainable.

Driving this surge in transportation efficiency are Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). Developers can find hundreds of APIs in the Transportation category in ProgrammableWeb's API directory. Listed below are some notable ones, including APIs for creating ride-sharing, route optimization, bike-sharing, and public transit applications.

Uber is a taxi-like ride-sharing service available in over 750 cities around the world. Developers can integrate services with third-party applications via the Uber APITrack this API. With the API, users can retrieve car types, driver location expressed in geo-coordinates, time estimates, estimated prices (including currency conversion when applicable), as well as user account history and activity. An Uber Riders APITrack this API is available to enable apps to request a ride, specify pick up and drop off locations, and get time and price estimates. And an Uber Driver APITrack this API  can enable users to access driver identity, ratings, trip details, and earnings.

TfL Journey Planner
Transport for London (TfL) is a London based transportation company that provides customers a way to find travel related information within the city of London. The TfL Journey Planner APITrack this API lets developers to integrate its services and data with their applications. Users can retrieve journey planning, status, disruptions, arrival predictions, timetables, fares and more with the API.

Get programmatic access to London Tube, Overground, TfL Rail, DLR & Tram status updates via this API

Get programmatic access to London Tube, Overground, TfL Rail, DLR & Tram status updates via this API. Image: Transport for London

eRail.in Indian Railways
Developers can access real-time train information on the Indian Railway database via the eRail.in Indian Railways APITrack this API. Calls to the eRail.in API can be made to return a list of stations with associated geolocation data, a unique train ID given two locations, the route of a given a train number, or to calculate the fare between destinations, check Passenger Number Statuses, return the live status of any given train, infer seat availability and booking logistics, track train timing, and more.

Moovit APITrack this API offers transit directions for 800 cities in 60 countries. Information is combined from public transportation operators and the user community to provide travelers with live transit data. Moovit features OmniSearch to discover the best routes, arrival times, and personalization for instant trip planning. Users can get a variety of transit options to reach specific destinations and deep linking is available for one-tap results.

Lyft is a ride-sharing service that provides affordable rides hailable through a smartphone application. The Lyft APITrack this API allows developers to integrate their applications with Lyft, enables access to available ride types in each city, display price estimates for each trip, design and a request flow, and more.

Multicycles is an application that enables access to different bicycle rental services, bike share services, scooter shares and shared cars for more than 650 cities. The Multicycles GraphQL APITrack this API allows users to query data about shared vehicles from a large group of providers in a single request, to locate and book vehicles, get trips history, and unlock vehicles. More than 40 providers are currently implemented and more are regularly added.

Create apps for booking shared bikes and other vehicles with Multicycles API

Create apps for booking shared bikes and other vehicles with Multicycles API. Image: Multicycles.org

Google Waze
The Waze service is a community-driven mobile application that provides free turn-by-turn navigation based on the live conditions of the road. Both the Google Waze Android SDK and Google Waze iOS SDKTrack this Framework/Library enable users keep up to date with traffic, navigation, and route info to develop mobile applications. uses the international server (i.e. not including US and Canada maps) to display driving conditions on a live map. With these official SDKs supported by Waze, developers can build applications related to traffic, transportation, and travel thinking in how a social community can improve driver lives.

The MyGasFeed APITrack this API provides frequently updated reports about automobile gas prices for specified locations or regions. It also provides locations and details about gas stations near a specified location. Applications can also update the service's pricing data for a particular station.

Google Maps Directions
The Google Maps Directions APITrack this API calculates directions for traveling between locations programmatically. Users can get directions for different modes of transportation, such as transit, driving, walking, and cycling. Developers can also use waypoints to calculate routes that pass through additional locations and estimate travel times.

Coord Curb Search
Coord Curb Search APITrack this API provides access to a description of what users can do on a curb. API methods are available to retrieve uses (such as parking or loading) and vehicles (taxi, commercial, motorcycle, etc.), geometry and direction, and temporary rules (such as construction zones). Coord provides several other transport-related APIs for smart cities, including Coord Toll Search APITrack this API for retrieving toll road information, and Coord Parking Access APITrack this API, which enables applications to authorize end users to park at a supported parking location.

The BART APITrack this API provides access to San Francisco BART service and station data available on the BART website. BART stands for Bay Area Rapid Transit. With the API users can retrieve overview information, advisories, real-time estimates, routes and schedules, station information and more.

Taxi Fare Finder
Taxi Fare Finder API enables application users to find the rate between two locations in more than 20 countries such as the United States, UK, Australia, Netherlands, Belgium, New Zealand, India, Spain and China. API methods cover name, locale and distance, and to retrieve a taxi fare, the required parameters are key, origin and destination, with optional parameters of Callback and traffic. More properties encompass initial fare, total fare, currency, percentage, and rate area.

OpenMobilityData is a joint effort from TransitScreen and MobilityData for the creation and sharing of global public transit and shared mobility data. The OpenMobilityData APITrack this API enables access to a global collection of official public transit data including General Transit Feed Specification (GTFS) data. The API can be used to create or enhance transport applications and study mobility data.

Get feeds from thousands of transport agencies around the globe with this API

Get feeds from thousands of transport agencies around the globe with this API. Image: OpenMobilityData

Making a transportation application? Don't stop at this short list of APIs. Head on over to the ProgrammableWeb Transportation category for 496 APIs, 120 SDKs, and 82 Code Samples.

Be sure to read the next Transportation article: HERE Technologies Showcases Public Transit and Intermodal Routing APIs