Waze Tests New Carpool Feature, Could Steal Riders from Uber and Lyft

Waze, the popular navigation app, has developed a carpooling function. It has begun testing and the company is seeking early adopters in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Waze shows us that most cars have at least one extra seat built-in 3 photos
Photo: Screenshot from YouTube
Waze showcases its beta testing program for carpoolingWaze showcases its beta testing program for carpooling
The latest addition to the Waze environment integrates the Carpool function into the native app. This would mean that drivers willing to share their cars with others on the way to work or from work could just press a button to make themselves available at a certain time and get a passenger for carpooling.

The pair of Waze users then formed would technically mean fewer cars on the road for the same trips.

The idea of carpooling is not new, but its adoption is not widespread because people have different schedules every day and you can rarely count on someone to pick you up every day on their way to work, or the other way around.

Waze’s new Carpool function proposes a new take on the carpool issue. Its users are already on the app, and they set their work and home as predefined destinations for ease of access.

Why not help them carry a passenger on the route and nowhere further, thus helping them earn some money for fuel? Meanwhile, the riders would be required to install a separate app, called Waze Rider. Through this app, one could seek and request rides.

The ride provider and the ride seeker would not exchange cash, to prevent misunderstandings and issues with payment (like the lack of change), and the transaction would be done automatically through electronic means. How much will a ride with Waze cost? Nobody knows for now, as this feature is in beta testing and only available to employees in the Bay Area.

Most likely, this might be more affordable than Uber or a taxi, because the driver would already use that route even without a passenger, and every dollar earned would become savings on fuel costs. Another difference from Uber (at this point) is a minimum age limit of 18 years old.

To ensure that people do not turn into Uber drivers, Waze is restricting trips for both drivers and riders to two per day, and only during rush hour traffic. This measure has a dual purpose - reduce the number of cars on the road at peak traffic and limit users to those who commute to and from work.

Waze also mentions that more parking spaces would become available, and coworkers would get another opportunity to socialize.

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About the author: Sebastian Toma
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Sebastian's love for cars began at a young age. Little did he know that a career would emerge from this passion (and that it would not, sadly, involve being a professional racecar driver). In over fourteen years, he got behind the wheel of several hundred vehicles and in the offices of the most important car publications in his homeland.
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