e-Hailing apps, such as Uber & Bolt, have revolutionised the way people travel. Many businesses proudly advertise their disruption, but in this case, these e-hailing apps have certainly caused quite a stir! The ease and convenience of the system has led to thousands of customers locally, and millions internationally, making regular use of these apps.
It is no wonder that many entrepreneurs have capitalised on the opportunity to be business owners as e-Hailing service providers. However, like any business, there are challenges. So here are a few helpful tips, considerations and things to look out for to help you navigate the industry.
- E-Hailing Insurance.
The e-Hailing insurance that was offered in South Africa went through some rough times. The risk management of the Uber and Bolt business is unique and resulted in several insurers cancelled their e-hailing insurance service because they were not able to sustain their insurance business, and a few insurers even went out of business. This left e-hailing business owners at risk, both financially and legally.
Luckily, Oaksure has emerged with e-hailing insurance products that are safe, stable and cater for the various requirements of Uber and Bolt vehicle owners.
- Metered Taxis
As Uber and Bolt grew in popularity, metered taxi organisations and drivers began to protest, and even resorted to violence. There are still areas that are “unofficially” off-limits for Uber and Bolt drivers. If an Uber or Bolt driver is “caught” by a metered taxi driver, they will attempt to extort a bribe and threaten violence if it is not paid. Sometimes metered taxis will actually attempt to damage your vehicle, and be violent to you and your passenger. It is VERY important that you and your passengers are safe at all times!
It is also, again, important to make sure that you have the right insurance cover, for 3rd part damage and liability cover for the vehicle, driver, and passenger.
- PDP and Legislation
Registered Uber and Bolt vehicles with the appropriate vehicle licence and drivers licence for the driver are legally allowed to operate.
Often e-Hailing drivers report that they remove and hide their PDP Licence Disc to avoid any confrontation with metered taxi drivers. E-Hailing drivers also report that police sometimes question why the PDP disc is not displayed, and that a humble explanation that they want to avoid any confrontation from metered taxi driver has often allowed them to leave with a verbal warning.
It is important to know that vehicles should be legal and compliant at all times.
- Uber and Bolt Registration
Registering with Uber and Bolt can take up to several months. Registration with these companies have several requirements, including insurance and maintaining an active vehicle. If your vehicle is stolen, or requires repairs, it could jeopardise your business. This is just another reason to make sure that you have the right insurance cover. You can also get Loss of Income Business Insurance from Oaksure to will make sure that your business is safe.
- Troublesome Customers
Working with people can be a pleasure and a challenge. e-Hailing drivers need to be aware of drunk passengers, customers who don’t pay, even sometimes violent passengers. Often drivers will avoid cash trips, as these are higher risk. Also, consider an internal dash-cam and make sure that you are aware of the Terms and Conditions of your app service. This will assist you to take necessary steps following an incident.
OTHER HELPFUL TIPS
Both Uber and Bolt in South Africa have support for their drivers. Visit the websites below for help information, or contact them directly via your Driver App on your mobile device.
Bolt Help Page:
Uber Help Page: