No surprises, we are big fans of the Uber app. It has connected millions of riders and drivers over the last nine years in India, and will continue to do so for years to come. But we also recognise that to keep expanding access to our services, we need to meet users where they are. And in India, that means WhatsApp, one of India’s most popular chat apps.
Starting this week, UBER is rolling out an exciting new service that gives people of Delhi NCR the option to book an Uber ride via our official chatbot on WhatsApp. Riders will no longer need to download or use the Uber app. Everything from user registration, booking a ride, and getting a trip receipt will be managed within the WhatsApp chat interface.
The integration, a global-first for Uber, was rolled out in Lucknow in December, 2021. Following its successful pilot, the Delhi NCR expansion marks a superior and more intuitive product experience as well as multilingual capabilities in English and Hindi for enhanced user experience. Built on the WhatsApp Business Platform, the partnership will expand access to Uber’s mobility services to a new segment of consumers through integration in two languages.
So how does it work?
WhatsApp users can book an Uber ride through three simple ways:
- Send ‘Hi’ on Whatsapp to +91 7292000002
- Click to Whatsapp: Here (Mobile phone only)
- Scan the following QR code
They will then be asked to provide pickup and drop off locations. Users will receive upfront fare information and the driver’s expected time of arrival.
Riders get access to the same safety features and insurance protection as those who book trips via the Uber app directly. They will be informed of the name of the driver and license plate of the driver on booking; be able to track the location of the driver en route to the pickup point and be able to speak to the driver anonymously using a masked number.
The WhatsApp chat flow will inform the rider about safety guidelines, including how to reach Uber in case of emergencies (type help on-trip). If the user selects the “emergency” option while on the trip, they will receive an inbound call from Uber’s customer support team. Uber riders will also have access to its safety line number to call, if needed, until 30 mins after the trip ends. This video explains the WA2R flow while booking an Uber ride.
The service is available to both new and existing users who registered with only a phone number on Uber. But Future product iterations of WA2R will allow existing users of the Uber app to also book trips through WhatsApp.
Drivers on Uber’s platform, however, will see no change in their experience with rides booked via WhatsApp.