For short trips, more and more people are relying on the services of the so-called ‘social economy’, using their peers to save or make money while making things a bit more convenient. There are a ton of websites and apps that make ride-sharing, car-sharing, or getting a taxi super easy, and not only are they cheap, they can also be better for the environment. Here, I’ll show you 7 of the best apps and services to help you hitch a ride.
Uber turns all of its members into potential taxi drivers. With its recent integration into Google Maps, you can order an Uber-taxi at the touch of a button, and as a registered driver, you can offer taxi rides.
Uber automatically hones in on the nearest available drivers using GPS, and sends them a request. If the driver accepts, Uber takes over all other tasks, including notifications and payment processing.
Sharing a ride
BlaBlaCar is one of the largest car-sharing platforms in Europe, and it’s perfect if you’re looking to take a Euro Trip for cheap. For longer trips, you can even offer free places to interested fellow passengers. With its cleverly thought-out system, BlaBlaCar proposes prices based on supply and demand. The service can even manage payment processing on request.
As with BlaBlaCar, you can offer rides, or catch a ride as a passenger. Besides car rides, carpooling also lets you take people using group tickets for buses, trains and flights.
Lyft is one of the most popular carpooling providers in the U.S. Unlike BlaBlaCar and carpooling, Lyft relies on short trips. To avoid legal problems with taxi services, no prices are agreed– instead, passengers make donations.
Unfortunately, on this platform, a kind of shadow market has emerged with reasonably fixed prices.
Sidecar Ride is another U.S. provider in direct competition with Lyft. Once again, this app focuses on short distances in cities. Thanks to an ingenious system and geo-location on maps, Sidecar Ride allows you to find trips at very short notice, although similar to Lyft, the success of the app depends on the size of the user base.
RelayRides works as a rental agency for private cars in the U.S. The user base isn’t clear yet, but RelayRides has strong partners on its side.
So far, General Motors and Google Ventures have appeared as investors. However, international expansion is probably only a matter of time.
With Getaround, car owners can rent their cars for a few hours, days or weeks. Unfortunately, Getaround whacks on a hefty commission of 40% of the rental price.
Amongst other things, this pays for comprehensive insurance. The service is currently only available in major U.S. cities like San Francisco.
Whether you’re looking for a ride, looking for some company, trying to make a few extra bucks for gas, or trying to save some cash, there are a ton car-sharing options that’ll help you get where you want to go.
If you’re looking to get around the city, check out our idea of the perfect public transport app.