Ride-hailing platforms are online or application-based platforms that allow users to hire a personal driver. They connect private-hire vehicle drivers with platform users who need a ride. In addition, these platforms can also offer pricing tools, matching platforms and rating systems.
Ride-hailing platforms have three components: driver app (for drivers to offer services and communicate with their customers), rider app (for customers to book and track their journeys and select vehicle types), and a dispatch system (a system that connects the driver and the customer via their mobile phones).
The business models of these platforms support both private-hire vehicles (PHVs) and drivers as well as licensed taxis. The service can be on-demand (available here and now) or pre-arranged (booked beforehand).
Ride-hailing platforms are mainly based on one of two business models or on a combination of them. The first includes transport network companies (TNCs). These companies work with private drivers who use their own usually non-commercial vehicles. The second model includes taxi ride-hailing platforms. These operators make contracts with licensed taxi companies and drivers to serve their own fleet. In recent years, a third possible business model has emerged — a model that combines private drivers and taxi companies. The combinational model allows PHV-based hailing-platforms to adapt their business models to local specifics.