Ever since the online taxi revolution took the world by storm, names such as Uber, Ola, Gett and Lyft have become ubiquitous across the world, the first two being pretty popular in India. And while these ride sharing apps have done a world of good, especially for people who do not like to drive through traffic or need to go out drinking with friends, there a few precautions that one needs to take and keep in mind while travelling in a cab. If you’re a woman, it is often necessary that you take a certain number of added precautions as well, especially if you’re travelling late at night.
Ride sharing apps have become increasingly safer for passengers, with the companies employing a number of safety checks with their drivers and cars. You can always go to the help section in any of the above-mentioned apps and learn more about their safety features. Apps such as Safr also allow you to choose the gender of your driver while cab companies such as Womencabs, Women on Wheels and Taxshe provide female drivers exclusively so that women can feel even safer while travelling. However, even with all of these advancements and safety features being put in place, you could still do with keeping a few things in mind in order to make your ride safer.
- It is always good to know about the route you’ll be taking and even the local currency and the ride rates beforehand, especially if you’re taking a ride in a foreign place.
- When you’re making a booking for your cab, try to do it standing away from the road and in a well lit area, or preferably indoors.
- Getting into the right car is of prime importance, so do check for the correct number plate, model of the car as well as the face of the driver before getting into the cab.
- Standing by the road with your phone out tends to make you an easy target for impersonators.
- While getting in, check that there is no one sitting in the passenger seats beforehand and try to sit in the rear passenger seats, especially if you’re travelling alone.
- Before you close the door, check for any child locks that might have been put in place, and also if the windows can be rolled up and down.
- Try to stay in the centre of the rear seat, with the windows rolled up completely or with only a slit for the air to pass through. This way, there’s a lesser chance of you being surprised by someone taking a swipe at your belonging from the car’s window.
- Once the ride starts, try to call a friend and let them know the details of the cab you’re taking, including the number of the driver and your estimated time of arrival, ensuring that you’re making the driver aware of your actions as well.
- Keep all your belongings inside your purse or bag, except for your phone which should be in your hands at all times.
- If you feel uncomfortable at any point of time in your ride, speak up and ask your driver to stop the car immediately in a safe location.
- Try not to take a cab home when you’ve had drinks or are impaired in any other manner.
- Finally, always speak up about the ride you’ve had and share your feedback, since it’ll help the company as well as other passengers riding after you.
Ride safe, always.