A ridesharing company matches drivers of vehicles for hire with passengers using mobile or web-based applications. Unlike traditional taxi companies, ridesharing companies have enjoyed less regulation in many markets, which has led to accelerated innovation, increased passenger convenience, and fast growth. The industry has suffered several high-profile criticisms around safety and employee welfare concerns over the past decade, though it remains a very popular alternative to traditional taxis.
Popular ridesharing companies include Uber, Lyft, and Gett, with a proliferation of local and regional alternatives such as Chinese company DiDi.
A typical ridesharing experience is as follows:
The passenger requests a vehicle using the ridesharing mobile application
The passenger is matched with a prospective driver who accepts the ride
Ride fare, the expected duration, and the route are shown in advance to the passenger
On completion of the journey, a mutual rating system ensures the trustworthiness of both the passenger and driver.
The ridesharing company facilitates payment of the driver, subtracting a service charge.
The success and convenience of ridesharing companies have led traditional Taxi companies to simulate the rideshare business model, either allowing taxis to be ‘hailed’ via a mobile app or having drivers service multiple rideshare companies simultaneously.