Global Safety Toolkit launched
On Wednesday, 19 December, Uber launched their Global Safety Toolkit for both riders and driver partners in Colombo.
They also announced a first of its kind insurance programme which allows both riders and driver partners to claim insurance for accidental death, permanent disability, medical expenses, and liability towards the third party. This unique insurance cover is underwritten by Allianz Lanka Insurance Ltd.
Making the announcements was City Lead for Uber Sri Lanka Ankit Gupta, who provided a quick rundown of the newly implemented safety measures.
It comes complete with safety tips and the trusted contacts feature which allows riders to designate up to five loved ones with whom they can be regularly prompted to Share Trip.
Provides direct access to 119 – the police control room – presented in the manner of a quick swipe feature for use in emergencies.
Both commitments come as Uber completes three years in Sri Lanka, one of its fastest growing TukTuk markets in South Asia.
Commenting on the launch and the new milestone, Head of Cities, South Asia, Uber Prabhjeet Singh said: “We’re proud to celebrate three years in Sri Lanka and we’re humbled by the love we’ve received from our riders and driver partners. So far, in Colombo, we’ve already enabled micro-entrepreneurial opportunities for more than 25,000 driver partners. In the weeks and months ahead, we’ll continue to engage with our driver partners and riders to work toward using Uber, which remains the most attractive opportunity for driver partners and the preferred choice for our riders.”
In celebration of Uber’s three-year anniversary in Sri Lanka, we asked the public what they had to say about their Uber experiences over the past few years.
Speaking about the new safety features, Ranush Ratnasekara said:
“For women, I think it would be nice if there was an emergency number that connects to the Police. I’ll feel safe sending my sister alone in an Uber that way.”
Prabath Swarna Sri Meemaduma, a temporary assistant lecturer at the University of Colombo said:
“Uber is very economical very late into the night because competitors hike their prices when it’s late. Also, I can always count on Uber to have drivers nearby, even at weird hours. One of the bad sides is that Uber does not let you get sidetracked from the main route, so if I wanted to take a detour, it complicates things, and since they don’t charge for waiting, I think it’s unfair for the drivers; they don’t like it if I wait a long time at a specific spot.”
Sriyal Nilanka said:
“Regarding these new safety features, while I personally have not had a need, from the shared experiences of my peers I believe it is a useful new addition.” However, he added: “It’s a convenient app, but I do wish that they had a function where we could make a prior booking; not in the way that it offers right now, which is simply a reminder which then works according to availability. It would be great if when we make a booking, a vehicle is reserved for us.”
Naveen Abeysinghe said:
“I enjoy Uber. It feels as though I am receiving a far more professional service; particular with regard to the drivers, however, even in this app, when it comes to tuk drivers, they tend to be less adept at using the technology, making polite conversation, and reading social cues. It would be appreciated if the tuk drivers were given more comprehensive training in customer service and also in using the technology.”
@IJust_Thought i.e Twitter’s Udara Madushanka from Galle said:
“Most of the time, drivers are professional and drive carefully, don’t disturb the passengers; vehicles are in good condition and they are maintained really well. The surcharge is a bit high compared with other taxi services; not enough vehicles; should expand this outside Colombo.”
“In my opinion, one good thing is that they have tied up with some of the leading corporates here in Colombo which makes it easy to book and make the trips quite convenient.”
Rochelle Wick, better known as @itsRochelleWick, a popular Sri Lankan beauty blogger said:
“Good service; most drivers are usually very professional and polite. But the price surges are insane.”
Michael Katugaha (@lobowolftrip) said:
“No major complaints from me yet. All drivers seem pretty courteous and safety conscious. Peak time prices are horrendous though.”