“Is it safe?”, I once asked a teammate on a late evening, who had booked a ride through an app to hop back home. The young female had nodded her head with a smiling face to my ignorant notion.
Well, my ears were accustomed to the likes of Uber and Ola and the name of this new app drew me to inquire its operation. Quickride’, an app that basically promoted carpool for the corporate population was quite the talk of town of late, given to its ease of operation and accessibility and also being economical.
The concept of carpooling never enticed the introvert in me and I respected my solo car space with Dusty racing away with its proud roar on its journey of home-office-home commute. The only companion filling the compartment air was either Disha from 93.5 or the soothing Rahman tunes or the knowledge insights of youtuber Arun Surya Tej.
I decided to give the app a shot and offered the first ride and in came two young IT boys ‘P’ and ‘A’ to invade the seats. The ride of 60 minutes turned young with discussions of their life in north, their interests, their contributions to the corporates and the first journey had ended on a positive note, reducing two strangers on earth. I felt quite intrigued of the process and decided to continue the carpool journey.
The progressing days turned the two into friendly regular companions and the two hours of commute time vanished with their talks. Days passed into months and Dusty kept reducing quite many strangers behind its three doors. Soon the time approached for the car to run full house both ways and Dusty geared away proudly dusting away the roads. Wide diversity filled the air – young millennials, my age’ ones, elderly, energetic, intellects, jovials, quiet ones, introverts, extroverts, and the list could go on and on…
The drive each day bought some new topic to the wheel – largely movies, sports, news, music, travel, cars, health, food, corporates etc. The group kept itself engrossed and any prolonged silence was quickly killed – to keep the introverts in the land of extroverts for that limited time at least, including myself :-).
Apart from the episodes of strangers turning friends, the process made me feel socially responsible, punctual, respect time, drive with care and caution. My fuel costs reduced too as these friends traded their points in return for the journey, which could be used for taking rides on the same platform or redeem the earned points to procure fuel.
It’s been around 5 months clocking around 700+ ride offers. While the data indicates that I have met 90 Professionals till date, it’s around 5 to 10 of them who continue to be regular companions and it is fun commuting with them. It’s when they work from home or decide to stay away from office, some new smiles greet Dusty and Me and keep the list of 90 moving upwards.
Well, my journey with QR shall continue until the like-minded professionals keep their company. My thumbs up to the App that is promoting the social initiative and thereby successfully achieving the following:
- Reduction of traffic congestion on roads
- Pollution check as friends of Dusty reduce on road
- Savings in travel costs (3 to 6 points/km), no peak surge
- Instils safe driving habits
- Varied choices during office hours (may not be convenient for odd hour travel)
- Presence of known Angels and professional environment