Bolt has rolled out a “Women’s Only” option in South Africa. The service will enable female riders to request services from female drivers only while hiding their requests from male drivers.
The Taxi-hailing app also partnered with South Africa’s national safety platform, Namola to integrate an SOS button into the app for lady drivers and riders using the “Women Only” platform.
The SOS button will give them 24/7 access to private armed response teams, private emergency medical services, and roadside assistance if they are involved in any medical or security emergency.
“Gender-based violence is a reality that women across South Africa contend with every day,” Gareth Taylor, country manager for Bolt South Africa, said. “Women Only – a service that is exclusively for and driven by women – shouldn’t be needed, but unfortunately it is.”
To tighten their security further, women drivers are allowed to install protection security screens in their vehicles at no extra charge. The process comprises installing thick Perspex screens between the front and the back seats creating a safety barrier between the driver and the passenger.
“Women e-hailing drivers and passengers have the right to feel safe and be protected from any harm while working and moving around, and the Women Only service provides this safety and protection,” Taylor added.
Bolt Women was piloted in East London and Rustenburg in November 2020. The response was overwhelming from both drivers and passengers. The company has now rolled out the service to South Africa, which is often riddled with rape and murder of women.
The service does not attract any extra charges.