Cab hailing app Uber on Monday said it will now allow private car owners in the city to offer rides to passengers, a move that will help the US-based firm meet the heavy demand expected once the state government implements its odd-even formula.
Introduction of the new feature Wednesday will also allow Uber to tap into a pool of over 2.7 million private cars in the city and make travel 10-30 percent 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,” Uber North India General Manager Gagan Bhatia told PTI.
Fares for shared riders will be 10-30 percent cheaper, he added.
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 after first 15 days and then 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 250,000 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.