Option to charge more for additional pick up and drop off stops

Comments

4 comments

  • Avatar
    Mark Stanley Kerr

    I believe this is a very fair proposal. If you are spending extra time and extra gas costs, it's only right that you be compensated for it. BUT, it should be discussed and the amount fixed and agreed upon BEFORE starting the trip. That's my opinion. I hope this helps.

  • Avatar
    Poparide

    Hi Daisy and Mark, thanks for the feedback.

    We strongly recommend asking passengers to make their own way to the pick-up location using transit, as Poparide is not a taxi service.

    Generally speaking we do not recommend custom pick-ups and drop-offs as they have several negative side-effects, including being late to pick-up other passengers, making it more work to plan the trip and creating confusion as to what Poparide is all about (not a door-to-door service).

    Furthermore, we operate our service following carpooling regulations, which state that drivers are not allowed to turn a profit on a trip, and in some cases adding an extra fee for a custom pick-up or drop-off would constitute breaking the law.

    For these reasons, we strongly recommend asking passengers to make their own way to the pick-up location, and to specify a pick-up location that is central for all passengers and easy to get to.

     

     

  • Avatar
    Jon Chesnut

    Hey Poparide team - this seems to be a significant change in position for you. Until recently, there was discussion in the "features" section about customizing prices per passenger to allow for pick-ups in locations other than the one that's posted. I'm disappointed to see that instead of discussing the change you removed the discussion. :(

    While I understand your current position of "passengers must make their own way to/from the pick-up/drop-off location", I believe that this is neither realistic nor an accurate summary of the way the service is commonly used. Consider the following:

    -the origins of Hitchplanet / Poparide go back to the Vancouver / Whistler days and it's always been a great way for skiiers (snowboarders!) to share rides back and forth to the ski resorts, most times with skis and snowboards (Poparide has a great feature to indicate whether the vehicle is ski friendly)! It's not so practical to take skis/snowboards on public transit, and even ride-hailing services frown on ski gear. Offering an optional additional pick-up location helps the passenger out, and if the driver is only covering his/her costs to do this, I don't see any issue.

    -one of Poparide's "internal goals for success" is that "you can count on Pop to get you to the airport on time to catch your flight", and again, you've for a great feature to indicate what size luggage is appropriate. While I understand that there are some trips that start/end at airports, the vast majority of trips don't. Again, offering airport pick-up or drop-off as an option at a cost-recovery price shouldn't cause any issues.

    -Poparide is designed for inter-city travel. Baggage and cargo are the norm, not the exception for these trips. Again, public transit to get from/to the pick-up/drop-off point may be inconvenient or impossible, and ride hailing services frown on anything other than a suitcase.

    I've driven over 200 Poparide passengers in the last 4 months, and at least 1/3 of my passengers ask for pick-ups or drop-offs in locations other than what's posted in my profile. I always reply with options for public transit and ride-hailing, but these are frequently unrealistic or inconvenient for the passenger. If I've got the time I'll offer to do the additional pick-up or drop-off. If it's a 5 minute detour or less (especially if there are multiple passengers that need the same location), I don't mind doing this. If it's more than a 5 minute detour, I'll suggest a nominal fee (more on this later).

    Let's look at the reasons you've listed for not allowing "custom pick-ups and drop-offs":

    -"being late to pick-up other passengers, making it more work to plan the trip and creating confusion as to what Poparide is all about (not a door-to-door service)" - For me, a custom pick-up will be earlier than the posted pick-up time, allowing plenty of time to get to there. Custom drop-offs are done after the posted drop-off. Further, as a ride sharing (not ride hailing) service, pick up and drop off times are already approximate, especially on longer trips! As for confusion, we're already seeing a huge number of drivers on Poparide offering door-to-door service - even in large cities, so while I understand your not wanting to confuse the service, I don't see a material difference either.

    -"we operate our service following carpooling regulations, which state that drivers are not allowed to turn a profit on a trip, and in some cases adding an extra fee for a custom pick-up or drop-off would constitute breaking the law." - This is a great point but the onus is currently (and should remain!) with the driver, and not with Poparide. Poparide has some great examples of how to calculate your vehicle's cost per kilometer - as long as this is being followed for custom pick-ups or drop-offs, I'm don't see an issue.

    To summarize, I can only see custom pick-ups and drop-offs as positive for the passenger who will get better service, positive for Poparide since it would increase the number of passengers, and positive for the driver who will see more seats getting filled!

  • Avatar
    Poparide

    Hey Jon,

    Thanks for the feedback - to clarify, we strongly recommend to push passengers to get picked up from a central location and not to create a habit of picking up passengers at their doorstep, if possible, to increase productivity and pave the way for a community that doesn't expect door-to-door service.

    One of the reasons we are pushing this direction is that we don't have such a feature in on our immediate product roadmap and it's unlikely we will add the ability to charge for "extras" in the near future, although it is a possibility down the line, but will need to be carefully thought through, as it has many implications, including pricing psychology, legality and possible abuse.

    Finally, not all drivers are equally good with time management and we find that accepting to pick up passengers out of the way often creates delays for the following passengers, lower ratings and complaints (especially in the Winter when they have to wait in the cold for a driver to show up).

    Drivers are already able to charge up to a maximum of 15c/km on Poparide and if they so wish to max the price on a trip for a custom pick-up, that is already possible.

     

Please sign in to leave a comment.