Yes! Yes! Yes! Uber is now in Pakistan. In fact, it is growing rapidly, not only the drivers but also with riders. Uber launched its lowest service across Lahore at 13.7 rupees’ kilometer, that is equal to 13 cents per kilometer. This price is low enough to attract customers but also gain a profit.
How has Uber adapted to Pakistan? Well for starters the customers will be allowed to pay in cash instead of credit cards, since most people don’t pay with credit car in Pakistan. This was first tested in Hyderabad, India. In addition, Uber has to contend with one of the lowest internet penetration rates in all of Asia – and believe me when I tell yah! INTERNET IS SLOW IN PAKISTAN.
It was interesting to find that, many of the Uber drivers have to take a crash course on sexual harassment – since this is not a topic of general knowledge or conversation in a country like Pakistan. In the seminar, the drivers are taught the basic boundaries of sexual harassment. They are meant to understand that physical contact or harm is not the only definition of sexual harassment. Riders, especially female riders, can get uncomfortable if they sense a lingering stare, inquisitive questions or too much enthusiasm. Many of the women in Pakistan are unemployed, this is primarily due to a lack of safe transportation. Moreover, it is hard for a woman to be independent in a nation like Pakistan, since it is simply not a part of the cultural norms.
In order to allow Uber in countries like Pakistan and India, where this can be a resource for a ton of people, Uber will have to go through rigorous screening for its drivers and provide mandatory training in regards to proper behavior and etiquette.
Introducing Uber in a place like Pakistan where the crime rate is so detrimental, but the need to a resource like Uber is in high demand, can be a challenge. The hope in establishing Uber I to give an opportunity for safe and reliable transportation to individuals, but this can easily come back and bite Uber in the butt if they are not overly cautious.
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