New ride-sharing service for school commute

The traditional school commute has been a major hassle for parents everywhere, but a new ride-sharing service is looking to change that.

ALL ABOARD: A new ride-sharing service allows parents to share the work of ferrying children to and from school
Picture: PIXABAY

The brainchild of Theuns Venter, the service is available through the already-existing d6 Connect app, which has been in use by schools for a number of years.

“I have four kids at four different schools and both my wife and I work full time,” Venter said.

“One night I was waiting outside the school at 8pm to collect my daughter once again from her weekly choir practice. Watching the scholars come out and all get into separate cars, it struck me that I would be more than willing to drop off some of those kids, if those parents could do the same for me the following week.

“And so the seed was planted – what if parents had a platform on which they could load their trips and the amount of extra space they have in their car to lift other children going the same destination?”

What makes the service appealing, Venter said, was that it was not open to everyone. Instead, only those registered on the d6 Connect app can take part.

“Parents who offer lifts are most likely to have their own child in the car so there is already that element of trust. Plus it’s a closed community and you are able to choose who you want to send your child with,” he said.

Product owner Ladien van Zyl said that riders and drivers can register their profiles in the d6 app, load up their preferred payment method and then get started.

Each driver is given a unique pass phrase for every trip which they use when collecting children, so that they know they are a registered driver as well as a parent at the school.

“What sets this new ride-sharing service apart from any other ride-hailing offerings is that the parents on the lifting network must all be registered parents at the same school or community, ensuring a trusted lift service for your precious cargo,” van Zyl said.

The process is managed within the safe d6 Connect app environment and is only available to parents that use the app and have children at schools that use d6 Connect.

“The success of the app lies in the hands of the parents. If parents don’t load their trips, other parents cannot book lifts. The more parents load their trips, the more people can use the service and the more your community will benefit.”

To register as a driver:

1. Open the d6 Connect app, go to MORE and select RIDES

2. Register as a driver and make sure you have all the necessary documents in place

3. Load your details (vehicle and available seats) that will be making the trip

4. Load the trips you are making where you can offer lifts

5. If someone books their child/children with you, accept them

6. Remember to start your trip and press the button in the app to say when you have picked up and dropped off the child/children as well as end your trip once the journey is complete.

To book a ride:

1. Open the d6 Connect app, go to MORE and select RIDES

2. Register and create a profile with a photo of yourself and your children (Zipalongs).

3. Load your card for payments

4. Select the trip you want to book

5. Provide the pick-up and drop off address

6. Select which of your children needs the lift

7. Share the details of the trip with your child (optional)

8. Track your trips

9. Receive pick up and drop off notifications.

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