Poparide launches “Think Outside the Bus” campaign to fill the Greyhound gap
The campaign calls to fill empty seats in cars already on the road and create a Canadian ridesharing network to ensure Greyhound’s two million yearly passengers aren’t left stranded.
On October 31st, Greyhound will leave Western Canada and two million passengers stranded.Let's fill this gap by filling empty seats in cars already on the road. https://www.poparide.com/greyhound
Posted by Poparide on Tuesday, October 23, 2018
Vancouver, BC — in one week, on October 31, 2018, Greyhound will leave Western Canada and many people without a way to get from A to B. Poparide, a Vancouver-based ridesharing platform is proposing a solution to help people travel in the region.
“We estimate that there are about 100 million car trips over 50 kilometres every year in Canada. With a national average of 1.6 persons per vehicle trip, that represents over 200 million seats that could be used to transport people on Canadian highways every year,” says Flo Devellennes, CEO of Poparide.
With over 110,000 registered members across Canada, Poparide operates an online website and mobile app that matches drivers with passengers heading in the same direction. The service facilitates the verification of users, the payment of a cost contribution from passengers to drivers and collects a 15% booking fee to generate revenue.
“Our mission is to make travel more social, affordable and sustainable for everyone in Canada. We do this by simply filling empty seats in cars and helping people travel together. This approach is unique in that it makes vehicles on the road more efficient, and doesn’t require any new infrastructure to be built or financed, making the service very scalable,” adds Devellennes.
Unlike ridehailing companies Uber and Lyft, Poparide targets drivers that are already driving on mid to long distance trips. The company uses provincial carpooling exemptions that allow drivers to collect cost contributions from their passengers. “Because drivers are driving anyway, they are happy to collect money to cover their costs. Passengers get an extremely affordable ride, up to 50% cheaper than what Greyhound was charging on most routes,” adds Devellennes.
Prices for rides vary based on the distance, with a minimum price of $5 per seat and a maximum price of 15 cents per kilometre. For example, a ride from Vancouver to Kelowna is priced at $35 ($40.25 with Poparide’s booking fee) and a ride from Calgary to Edmonton is $20 ($23 with Poparide’s booking fee).
Poparide’s model of ridesharing is already widely adopted in Europe, where companies like BlaBlaCar will facilitate rides for over 50 million people in 2018. With few train services in Western Canada, and the end of Greyhound bus service, Devellennes explains that he wants to make ridesharing part of the transportation fabric of Canada. “Poparide is perfect for Canada, with so many people driving cars on long distance trips, and the trustworthy nature of Canadians. It’s also aligned with Canada’s pledge at the Paris climate accord, as increasing vehicle occupancy reduces carbon emissions”.
Poparide is a city-to-city ridesharing platform launched in Vancouver in December 2014. It boasts over 110,000 members across Canada and has helped its members share over eight million kilometres. Popular routes include Vancouver to Squamish ($10 a seat), Calgary to Canmore ($10 a seat) and Kingston to Toronto ($20 a seat).