Cab hailing application Uber said on Monday that it will now allow private car owners in the city to offer rides to passengers. This move is expected to help the US-based firm meet the heavy demand expected once the state government implements the odd-even formula.
The new feature will be introduced from December 16. It will allow Uber to tap into a pool of over 27 lakh private cars in the city and make travel 10-30% cheaper for passengers opting to share rides. “We don’t need more cars on the road, what we need is better utilisation as a number of seats go vacant in a ride. Using our platform, private car owners can offer rides to others and thus reduce congestion and pollution in the capital over time,” said Uber north India general manager Gagan Bhatia.
Fares for shared riders will be 10-30% cheaper. The Delhi government will implement its much debated odd-even car scheme from January 1, 2016, allowing vehicles with license plates ending with odd and even numbers to ply on alternate days.
The scheme will be reviewed on after the first 15 days, after which the government will study its impact and decide if the plan will be extended further or not.
In October, Uber had inked an agreement with the Punjab government to run a pilot to test peer-to-peer ride-sharing. While ride sharing in private cars is an evolved concept in the US market for cab hailing companies, the trend is yet to pick up in India. Currently, Uber only has drivers with commercial licences on board in India.
Uber has over 2.5 lakh registered driver partners on its platform in India and is present in 22 cities, the highest in any country outside the US.
The company, which competes with Ola and other cab companies like Meru in India, has ride sharing facility available in Bengaluru as well as other international cities like San Francisco, New York City, Boston, Austin, and Paris.