Apps

Phone to Ride: Carpooling and Taxi Apps in Pakistan

The days of getting out and hailing a cab or coordinating manually to carpool are far behind us – multiple apps and businesses are working to bring that process to your phone. These include the famed local start-up “Savaree”, Rocket Internet’s Tripda and Easy Taxi, as well as the good old Metrocab.

Savaree

Savaree is a homegrown carpooling app with a simple motto: “Never Ride Alone”. Users can post routes that they intend to travel on or regularly use in order for others with similar routes to join them. To sign up as a driver/passenger (called “Savaree Captain”) simply by providing your name, email, phone number, CNIC and your route.

The intended target demographic from their video advertisement and website are students and young professionals. It is unclear how the monetary transaction happens – the website does say that the driver can cash out from a physical outlet, but it doesn’t say how passengers are supposed to pay. The app is only available for Android users, has less than 5,000 downloads and not-so-great reviews on Google Play. There are many obstacles in terms of the way things operate in Pakistan (payment platforms, trust etc) that need to be overcome for such a ride-sharing platform to be successful, but the first step towards all of that would be a great app that first-time users are not discouraged by.

Savaree | Savaree on Google Play

Tripda

Tripda is Rocket Internet’s ride-sharing app/service. There are clear differences between Savaree and Tripda in how the app works. First, you can use your Facebook profile to log in to the app versus the CNIC-plus information that Savaree requires. It is available for both Apple and Android users. Reviews for the Tripda app are not promising either, but it allows users to post and see information like the number of seats available in your car and the cost of the ride. To account for users’ preferences, specially in developing countries, there is an option for a “Ladies only” service where female passengers can search for female drivers and vice versa.

The service started in Pakistan a couple of months ago and launched in over a dozen other countries over 6 months. Like many other Rocket Internet ventures, this scalable model will be dependent on how users adapt to this service.

Tripda | Tripda on Google Play | Tripda on Apple Store

Easy Taxi

Easy Taxi is Rocket Internet’s taxi booking app. Touted as a global taxi booking app (available in 30 countries), the app is available to users and taxi drivers in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.

The Easy Taxi app’s unique selling point is that you can call a taxi in one click. All you need to do is open the app and click “Call Taxi”. The app uses your location to call the taxi that is closest to you. The app also claims to register taxi drivers with modern cars. This makes for an interesting criteria for the Pakistani market where most of the taxis are small cars from the 80s/90s and taxi drivers are highly unlikely to be smart phone users.

According to the venture leader in Pakistan, Easy Taxi is aiming to change the concept of taxis in Pakistan by focusing on newer and better cars.

Easy Taxi | Easy Taxi on Google Play | Easy Taxi on Apply Store

Metrocab

Metrocab is a cab service for the niche market of people who are likely to own cars but need a decent ride to/from the airport or bus station. Keeping up with the times, Metrocab has launched an app for smartphone users to get their services without calling them. Unlike the services described above, Metrocab’s business model is not dependent on the success/failure of this app, the service is extremely easy to book via phone and has physical booking outlets in all the major areas.

Metrocab | Metrocab on Google Play

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. k8

    30/03/2015 at 9:13 pm

    Metrocab is something i would use. And for savaree. No way man! Too dangerous.

  2. Yunus Kahn

    18/04/2015 at 1:41 pm

    I frequently use MetroCab in both Karachi and Islamabad. I asked for a Metrocab on Thursday 16th of April to be sent at 7 to take me from Gulshan-e-Iqbal to Abdullah Shah Qazi’s Mazaar. I was told its flat charge of 550 Rupees. Once the taxi arrived, I decided to stop at Gulshan Chowrangi for 5 minutes. The driver told me the package would change from 550 Rupees for 15 Kms to 610 Rupees for 12 kms and additional 25 rupees per km’s after that. I agreed. When I was getting off the taxi at Gulshan Chowrangi, there wasnt sufficient parking so I asked the driver to give me his cell number so its easy to trace the cab. He told me it was company policy not to let drivers give out their cell numbers. Keep in mind, when the driver arrives to pick you up, he calls you from his cell to inform you or if he cant find your pick up point. The driver told me he would parked infront of the next building adjacent to the one I was going in. When I came out, he was no where to be seen. So I called 021-35393951, the number that had informed me m taxi had arrived to pick me from Gulshan. This guy had a very rude attitude from the start. He told me I shouldnt have gotten off the taxi and stopped at Gulshan Chowrangi, and that the taxi was waiting in front of a CNG station and I should walk to it. The CNG station was no where in the line of sight. I asked him to tell the driver to come to the spot where he dropped me. He responded with ‘Kya museebat hai’ and then asked me ‘You want him to come the wrong way?’ very sarcastically. I told him I wanted him to take a u turn and come back and he wasnt doing me any favours, its a charged service I am paying for. He hung up on and didnt take my call after that. I was left standing in the middle of no where, with no contact with the taxi. This is the brilliant customer service you get from Metro Cab. The person who hung up on me was either Mr. Sheraz or Noman because only these two were on duty. I then called their complaint number and informed Mr. Mansoor of the incident. He said strict action would be taken within 24 hours and I would be informed. Its been 2 days now, nothing. The whole company from top to bottom is being run by imbeciles and it seems its a company policy to not give a damn. I would like to get in touch with the owner and inform him of how things are being run by employees.

  3. Abdullah

    19/02/2021 at 10:29 am

    Hitchman is a very efficient office carpool app. It is a ridesharing app which helps you to share your daily office commute to save up to 80% on your commute costs. It is available on the play store and app store.

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