- Car-sharing company ReachNow announced in a blog post Tuesday it is now the first company to offer both car-sharing and ride-hailing within a single app.
- Starting in Seattle, members will be able to access both ReachNow Drive (car-sharing) and Ride (ride-hailing) services. The "Drive" option allows members to pay by the minute, hour or day for a personal car that they can drive themselves, and the "Ride" option allows members to select an on-demand or scheduled pick-up option from a personal driver. ReachNow Ride also allows members to select in-car temperature, music preferences and "quiet time."
- The Seattle Times predicts that ReachNow Ride will compete with Uber and Lyft by offering a "higher-end experience."
While ReachNow is entering a business that is already dominated by well-established giants like Uber and Lyft, its presence as a "customizable" — and somewhat exclusive — service should create additional competition. To use the ReachNow service, interested users must confirm a membership agreement and pay a one-time, non-refundable fee to sign up. Though this sense of exclusivity is not for everyone, especially folks who infrequently use ride-hailing options to get around, it may inspire some other ride-share companies to enhance their services.
The new ride-hailing service may also be an attractive offering to folks looking to work as a driver. The Times reports drivers are paid by the hour, not by the ride, and drivers will use existing ReachNow cars instead of their own personal vehicles. Drivers are also eligible for weekly bonuses if they keep their ratings between 4.8 and 5 stars.
Aside from the Drive and Ride offerings, ReachNow also touted a fresh app redesign and new features to be announced in the coming weeks.
"It’s no secret that there’s a dramatic shift underway in where people live and how they get around the community," ReachNow Chief Customer Officer wrote in a blog post. "We are in the thick of the great urbanization of cities, which is putting a crunch on public transit options and city streets." He said ReachNow plans to play "a key role" in this shift, indicating that the Seattle launch is just the beginning of ReachNow's ride-hailing journey.