Singapore-based transport app RYDE has expanded into the taxi booking market, after it was formally awarded a Third Party Taxi Booking Certificate by the Land Transport Authority today (May 25).
This makes it the third company to offer such services here, after Uber and Grab.
In line with this, RYDE has partnered with ComfortDelGro Taxi – Singapore’s largest taxi operator – to launch a taxi booking service on its app next week.
This means that users will now have an alternative method of commute, and can book a CDG cab on its platform, in addition to its usual carpooling option.
Touted as the world’s first real-time carpooling app, RYDE was launched in 2014; and it aims to provide a sustainable alternative for the daily commute to solve the congestion and pollution issues facing cities today.
Talks between the two companies started in March, and a partnership agreement was signed only last month.
Since then, RYDE has been working on integrating their network with the taxi operator’s booking system.
Dominating The Taxi Fleet In Singapore
Following this partnership, RYDE will boast a fleet size of over 45,000 vehicles, comprising 30,000 privately-owned vehicles and about 16,000 ComfortDelGro taxis.
This will make up more than half (60 per cent) of the total taxi fleet in Singapore.
In turn, ComfortDelGro taxi drives will now have access to 100,000 RYDE users; and all taxi bookings made from the RYDE app will be routed directly to the taxi company.
Bookings through the app will show up seamlessly on cabbies’ monitors mounted in their vehicles, with no additional training required for the cabbies.
For every booking that cabbies get through the new service, ComfortDelGro will pay RYDE a referral fee, although the exact figure was not disclosed.
In order to ensure the most competitive fares, RYDE enables users to book both flat fare and metered taxi trips. The flat fare option computes a fixed fare, taking into account distance traveled and existing surcharges, providing certainty of fares.
Commenting on this partnership, Terence Zou, CEO and founder of RYDE said that “RYDE will be able to improve user experience when users cannot find a suitable carpooling option.”
“We are glad to partner RYDE to offer the commuters more choices to book our taxis. RYDE users also have a choice of both the flat fare and metered fare. The carpooling service, however, is not something on the cards immediately,” added Ang Wei Neng, CEO of ComfortDelGro Taxi.
As previously discussed, we think it’s a pity that ComfortDelGro is still not taking up the carpooling option that RYDE would be readily be able to provide. With Singapore riders clamouring over cheap fares, taxi drivers will definitely see a rise in bookings if they offer commuters that option as well.
On a separate note, RYDE said that it will also be launching a slew of in-app features such as electronic cashless payments in the coming weeks.