NAIROBI, Kenya - Bolt, the on-demand transport platform in Africa and Europe, has introduced additional features on its driver's App to enhance the safety and well-being of drivers, Boda riders, and passengers during a Bolt trip.
The new safety features include the driver trip sharing feature and the rider score feature which now allow drivers, Boda Boda riders, on its platform to share their live trips as well as be able to rate their passengers.
The driver trip-sharing feature provides enhanced safety for drivers by allowing them to share the status of their live trips with a third party, who then has the opportunity to follow the trip status and location in real time. The trips are also tracked and monitored in real-time by Bolt throughout the journey.
"We are constantly looking to promote features and functionalities that improve the safety ecosystem of our app. The trip-sharing feature for drivers will improve the safety and well-being of drivers during a Bolt trip, and also act as a deterrent to people with potentially malicious intent against drivers and Boda-boda riders during a trip. Our core business is to provide sustainable, safe, and affordable mobility services to everyone," said Bolt Eastern Africa regional manager Kenneth Micah.
Drivers share their trip details via a link that is automatically generated once they are on a trip. The link can be shared by email, SMS, WhatsApp, or Telegram to any third party who will then be able to see the trip status and location in real-time.
The link is valid for the current trip, and drivers have to issue a new link for every trip if they feel necessary to do so. The links will also remain active for up to 48 hours for incomplete trips.
"The link is in place to track the progress of a given trip and allow a third party to make sure that the driver completed the trip as expected. The feature will not breach passenger's confidentiality as no information about passengers is being shared from the driver's end," added Micah.
The trip-sharing feature functions in a similar way as the 'Share your ETA feature' on the passenger's app that enables passengers to share their live trip details with emergency contact numbers, thereby bolstering safety throughout their journey.
Bolt has also introduced the rider score feature which enables drivers to rate their passengers after every trip. The feature monitors passenger behavior as rated by the drivers, and allows Bolt to warn and/or block passengers with unacceptable behavior.
The ratings are taken into careful consideration and Bolt addresses situations where those ratings are significantly low, or an incident is reported by a driver.
When a passenger gets a significantly low rating, or an incident is reported by a driver, the company will conduct due diligence, and necessary actions shall be taken including the issuance of an in-app notification encouraging passengers to read the company's terms and conditions again. Ultimately, if a passenger's behavior does not improve after that, Bolt shall block their respective accounts.
Other security features available on the Bolt app include the SOS emergency button that can be used to alert and seek security or medical assistance at any time during a Bolt trip, where a driver, a passenger, or another road user is in immediate danger.
Bolt also has a women-only category aiming to address safety needs and improve women's mobility by connecting female drivers with female passengers. Bolt continues to constantly innovate and invest in features that improve the experience of both the drivers and passengers and enhance safe journeys before, during, and after the trip.