The Performance Management consultant in me jumped out this weekend during the shuttle ride from my hotel to the airport. There were two groups in the shuttle. One group had seven people and was going to the second terminal. I was alone and going to the first terminal. The driver went to the second terminal to drop them off, and then had to go all the way around to drop me off. It was a 10 minute detour compared to stopping at the terminals in order. It made me wonder because the driver was adding to the total time of his route. So if that wasn’t what he was optimizing, what was? And why?
I suspect that the driver was minimizing the total passenger time. Dropping the other group off first decreased the time for seven people even as it increased the time for me and for him. It reduced the number of total trips he could make, unless they had slack built into his route for this possibility.
If it was just a random thing and I am reading too much into it, then this post is just an interested thought exercise. But if the SuperShuttle really developed a novel route management process to maximize a net-net user experience, I would really be impressed. Even if it did cost me 10 minutes.