A driving service isn’t enough

At the time of their launch, both Uber and Careem enticed customers with generous discounts

Sara Alam September 13, 2016

With mobile app-based car-hailing services Uber and Careem launched in Pakistan, many of us hoped we’d finally be relieved from the ordeal of poor public transport.

Although both companies have gained immense popularity and demand in the metropolis, there have been some major glitches that need to be addressed and fixed immediately to maintain the status and utility of such services. At the time of their launch, both Uber and Careem enticed customers with generous discounts. While Careem kept its word, Uber has been a major disappointment. Its promo code didn’t work for many who view it as nothing but a marketing technique to divert the masses’ attention from Careem.

Uber vs Careem: Which online taxi service is better

Aiming to be a chauffeur-driven car at the touch of a button, both services have failed to provide us trouble-free journeys. What has led to a major setback is the notification quoting ‘no cars available in the area’.

It is a turn-off when people urgently need to travel in case of rain or during festival days and they can’t find a ride because the companies don’t have enough cars. This annoying obstacle with hours of booking issues lead to customers’ frustration which kills the purpose of these services altogether. They need to understand that launching a driving network isn’t enough; they need to function properly and effectively to facilitate people in the right way. There is no doubt that Careem drivers desperately need to learn the routes and directions for that is the major skill a driver needs to have.

Whereas the drivers at Uber need to be well-equipped and vigilant. Booking a cab and explaining the driver the exact route only to find his phone off later due to battery issues is something that will blow anyone’s mind. There’s no point if the driver goes missing and gets back to you after an hour or so when you’ve taken an alternative and wasted ample amount of your time.

Karachi opens its roads to Uber

As a driving service, these things should have been taken care of way before launch because these issues make such services extremely unreliable. No matter how much the demand is, and how widespread these services are, these malfunctions cannot be ignored and both Uber, Careem must gear up to resolve them on all fronts to achieve success.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 13th, 2016.


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