Taxi hailing service Meru Cabs has launched a ‘CarPool’ service for customers across the country. The feature built in the mobile app offers the ‘personal car’ ride sharing option for people travelling in the same direction or area.
Carpooling has not really got off in Indi as much as it has in US or few other countries. People will willingly share public transport, but not let strangers in their private vehicle. However, some major cities in the country are jumping into the bandwagon now.
Despite for the companies, which provide share cabs to drop off and pick employees, and a group of friends travelling to a common location, we do not see as much of self-conscious efforts to save fuel, or even to move towards greener pastures. However, share-rickshaws and share-taxis are a popular option among the working class in the country.
“This is a pure customer to customer service, and we are making it available across the country,” Siddhartha Pahwa, chief executive of Meru Cabs, told PTI. “We are currently not monetizing it, but we will work towards charging a margin fee in future once the service is well established,” he added.
Different business models and commuter incentives are driving up the interest in carpooling. The phenomenon globally has been popular and is soon catching up, but at a very slow pace in India as well. It is the most common ride-sharing arrangement that consists around two to four persons commuting in a vehicle. It saves the fuel and also the environment!
One should consider sharing rides with co-workers, which the practical lot does to an extent. Filling friends with 4 friends together you’ll end up paying just 25% of what you had paid to drive alone.
This even saves the wear and tear of the car, and also saves you time and money, because pairing up allows you to share tolls on bridges, and if many in the city follow suite, it might even open up access to less-clogged roads.
With the latest rape incidents in cabs in the country, the company is bound to check credentials of customers who would offer rides. The detail will include details of driving licence, Aadhar and PAN. CarPool by Meru also comes with a wallet partnership with Paytm to offer its customers cashless travel.
A survey conducted by Regus states that 26 per cent of commuters in India spend over 90 minutes per day travelling to work and meetings. Also, about 16 per cent of all commuters drive to work on their own and on average 67 per cent of respondents drive to work using their car, indicating the huge potential for carpooling among the commuters.
“The top 20 cities alone have over 12 million cars and the opportunity is to bring them on a popular and trusted platform like Meru,” Pahwa said. “The Carpool initiative aims to reduce the one-person per vehicle issue through sharing a ride with another person headed in the same direction with added convenience and economy of travel,” he added.
Carpooling: A Step To Reduce Congestion (A Case Study of Delhi) by Kum Kum Dewan and Israr Ahmad shows up some interesting data. Without carpooling, the amount required for 968,316 kilolitre petrol for 1.3 mn cars is Rs 4,213 crore per annum. By carpooling, this amount reduces to Rs. 2902 crore. Thus, a revenue of Rs. 1310.98 crores can be saved by saving 301,307 kilolitre petrol by carpooling in Delhi.
Considering the fact that the study was done way back in 2007, the numbers must have obviously gone up by heaps in the 2015 that we’re living in.
There is definitely some growing levels of consciousness among people the masses about the need to reduce congestion on roads, pollution, and stress associated with travel.
Download Meru Cabs App from Playstore to avail carpooling service
This article has been well researched by Rise My Venture team.