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Opinions of Friday, 28 February 2020

Columnist: Nii Adjetey Sowah, Contributor

Using ride-hailing apps for comfort

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Early in February, I read an article on one of the news sites in Ghana. I must say I was impressed by the writer’s praise for one of the ride-hailing services in Ghana, specifically Yango.

Just a glance at the ride-hailing service sector gives the impression that the space is dominated by three major players – Yango, Bolt and Uber, with a myriad of smaller ones popping up daily. This multiplicity leaves riders with a variety of options to choose from, but it appears not all have the technological strength and financial muscle to pose a real threat to the big three.

Reading Tettey-B’s write-up in February, I decided to give the ride-hailing apps a try. For starters, I downloaded one minor and one major - Dropyn and Yango and decided to try them out on my way to my lectures at Legon.

First up, Dropyn. Now, Dropyn hardly had vehicles available when I requested for one on campus. I tried this over a period of three days, and honestly it would have been easier to walk from campus to my hostel than get a Dropyn car. But when it came to Yango, the experience was great. Though the wait times went past 5 minutes sometimes, there was hardly ever variation in prices as indicated before and at the end of trips.

As a first timer, I had some challenges using the Yango app, but my good friend Kojo gave me some pointers on how to turn on my location service and immediately I was able to request rides without hitches. One interesting thing I discovered after trying Yango was the Ride Share with Friends feature on the app. This feature is quite handy because it allows you to let loved ones to keep track of your trips. Another feature I found on Yango which I did not find anywhere else is the ability to order rides for myself as well as someone else concurrently.

In the coming weeks, I will give other ride-hailing apps a try to see how they match up against Yango, but in the meantime – I’ll say a big thanks to Tettey B. His article opened my mind up to how cool ride hailing apps are, and I do agree that they have transformed our transportation sector for good.