MUNICH, Germany and PALO ALTO, Calif., Dec. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The No. 1 European ridesharing platform, carpooling, today announced it is launching in the U.S., making door-to-door, long-distance transportation convenient and affordable. Drivers and passengers can quickly select and connect on the details of their trip via a free iOS and Android mobile app. With this launch, carpooling opens its ridesharing technology to U.S. consumers for the first time, providing an easy, safe, and social way for riders to share transportation and save money on mid- to long-distance travel.
In just a few seconds, the carpooling app lets passengers search for rides anywhere in the U.S. and enables drivers to post available car seats. In the past, getting home for the holidays or visiting family members cost effectively could be tough. The carpooling app encourages users traveling the same direction to ride together, sharing travel costs and helping the environment by getting cars off the road -- all while making the experience comfortable, reliable, and fun. Instead of taking a boring bus ride or an expensive flight, carpooling makes it easy to safely connect with drivers.
App features have been designed to make traveling via carpooling safe, and reliable. Drivers include information on their profiles such as car license plate, photo ID, and Facebook profiles. Travelers can rate drivers, view a driver's star rating, and read passenger and driver comments to help ensure a safe, secure ridesharing experience.
Through a product integration with Uber, carpooling will be the first company to offer a door-to-door long-distance service in the U.S. Passengers can request to be picked up at home by an Uber to take them to the starting point of their carpool, and then request an Uber at the arrival point to take them to their exact destination, if needed – all from within the carpooling app.
"Our concept is simple: turn empty car seats into a cost-effective, eco-friendly, and fun mode of transportation. We recognize there won't be an abundance of passengers and drivers connected with each other at launch, but we're confident from more than a decade of experience in Europe that supply and demand will grow rapidly," said Markus Barnikel, carpooling CEO.
Designed in collaboration with renowned global product strategy and design consultancy frog, the carpooling app makes finding rides and meeting up with drivers quick and intuitive. Registration and login is made easy via Facebook. Drivers then post their driving routes and times of departure. Passengers can search for available rides, compare prices and departure times, and review driver profiles.
Booking a ride takes only a few seconds. With the "Live Map" feature, the passenger can see the meeting point and book an Uber, if needed, to get there. Built-in GPS functionality lets drivers and passengers easily locate one another at the agreed meeting place and time. After the ride, the driver and passenger rate each other.
Ridesharing via carpooling is unique from other platforms:
- carpooling ridesharing is designed specifically for longer distances (average trip is 125+ miles).
- carpooling does not employ drivers or encourage driving for profit. The company and app provides a platform that enables everyday people who happen to be traveling in the same direction to contact each other and share the costs of their trips.
- The carpooling app is a premium tool with value-added functionalities designed specifically to make ridesharing easy, safe, and convenient.
Headquartered in Munich, Germany, with initial funding by carmaker Daimler, carpooling was founded in 2001 as mitfahrgelegenheit.de by three students at the University of Wurzburg in Germany. The platform quickly grew in popularity, and today ridesharing is one of the most popular travel options for mid- to long-distance journeys in Europe. More than 3.5 million ridesharing offers are accessible through the carpooling app every day. For more information, visit www.carpooling.com.
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