Ride-hailing firm Ola on Tuesday launched its services in Coventry and Warwick, the eighth and ninth cities in the UK. The development would further deepen its battle with US rival Uber. For the past three weeks, drivers from across these communities have been busy in training, after local councils granted Ola with both taxi and private hire licenses – a first for these areas.
Ola said its ride-hailing app will redefine the transportation needs of over 600,000 locals in the area. The local community and visitors will benefit from a greater travel choice, with quicker and easier access to taxis. Customers will also enjoy competitive pricing – with new users receiving 50 per cent off, on all rides for the first two weeks, according to the company. The firm would also provide 24-hour safety support offered by Ola’s in-app customer care and emergency service.
“We are thrilled to expand our service to Coventry and Warwick, having launched in Birmingham earlier this year. We have learnt a great deal in the last twelve months since the launch, and feel immensely proud that our drivers have already provided over one million rides across the UK,” said Alok Pandya, Ola’s Regional Manager for the West Midlands, Coventry and Warwick.
Ola said it is the only app that can be used by both black cabs and Private Hire Vehicles (PHVs) in the area, giving both drivers and riders even more choice and better access. As part of their pledge to empower drivers, Ola said it offers the highest driver rates compared with competitors, while still ensuring that passengers enjoy industry-leading prices.
“Coventry is the home of the black cab, and as such we are delighted to be able to boost income opportunities for local drivers. We are leading the way with driver benefits, and are the only app in the area to include black cab drivers in our dynamic fleet,” said Pandya.
To encourage inclusivity for their drivers, Ola has committed to make black cab and PHV ride options equally attractive to app users, by ensuring that they are competitively priced. Black cabs do not ‘peak’, meaning that they can be cheaper when PHVs are in high demand, said Ola. Passengers have taken more than one million rides across the UK through Ola’s ride-hailing app, since the company launched in Cardiff in August 2018. Ola said it has been warmly welcomed in Bristol in October; Bath and Exeter in November; and Liverpool, Birmingham and Reading this March.