Bike taxi and scooter rental companies such as Rapido, Vogo and Bounce have resumed services in many cities in India following new guidelines announced by the government for Lockdown 4.0. Few of these companies are offering services like home delivery of sanitised vehicles, apart from sanitisation kits.
Rapido said it has started its bike taxi services in over 35 cities, following the new guidelines announced by the government. For now, its bike taxi services will be operational in the green and orange zones as the services cannot be extended to the containment zones as per the lockdown guidelines.
The company said resuming these operations will bring relief to around 300,000 Captains (driver-partners) who are solely dependent on the bike taxi service for their livelihood. Additionally, the firm would keep updating its customers on the status of various cities and safety instructions via in-app notifications.
“We are showing containment areas in our app and making sure Captains and customers don’t pass by those areas,” said Rapido.
For safety protocols, Rapido’s Captains have been trained towards implementing safety checks and guidelines to follow before accepting rides to ensure customer safety. The Captains are required to install Covid-19 tracking Aarogya Setu app before they can go On-duty to start accepting orders. The need to wear a mask at all times and carry sanitizers, hair net in addition to the mandatory helmets. The Captains are asked to maintain personal hygiene and sanitize their bikes at regular intervals.
Vogo, an on-demand scooter and bike rental service provider, said it has launched its operations in Bengaluru. To ensure the safety of its customers, Vogo will home deliver the sanitized bikes to those who are unable to come to pick them up from the docking stations. The company will be opening 50 additional docking stations in the city.
As part of this initiative, Vogo has also increased the rental duration of the two-wheelers that they are offering to its customers so that they are carefree and much more relaxed about the ownership of the vehicle they are using. The company said it sanitizes all of its vehicles with anti-microbial solutions before handing over the bikes to users. It is also distributing sanitization kits to their customers which includes hand sanitizer, gloves, solutions to sanitize the bike and cleaning cloth. People will also be able to extend the bike rental service online themselves.
“We aim to help our customers in resuming their life by offering safe and convenient options,” said Anand Ayyadurai, chief executive of Vogo. “Not only people’s interest in renting two-wheelers has gone up, but the renewal of subscriptions for longer periods has also seen a surge. In just seven days, 50 per cent of our customers have booked for renewal and 30 per cent of them have ordered for delivery to home.”
Another company Bounce has resumed its dockless scooter sharing services in Bengaluru and Hyderabad. It has introduced flexible long term rental and subscription options also called Bounce-A (Atmanirbhar) to enable seamless commute within cities. Currently, Bounce has rolled out a few hundred vehicles and the company plan to introduce more scooters on the street in a batch-wise manner.
The company said self-driven scooters are currently the safest mode of commute. It said using the services of Bounce people have easy access to an individual, safe and affordable scooter, enabling them to move while maintaining social distancing. Within a week of resuming operations, Bounce said it has done over 35000 daily rides. “As the lockdown gradually lifts and economies open up, we will see an uptake in self-driven shared mobility solutions,” said the company.