With the second phase of the odd-even ruling in Delhi underway, here’s a list of apps and websites that can make the commute from home to work and back much simpler, hassle-free, and eco-friendly.
The second phase of the odd-even car rule in Delhi kicked off on April 15. The rule is expected to be in effect till April 30, from 8 AM to 8 PM, except on Sundays. As in the first phase, cars with number plates ending in odd numbers can travel on odd-number dates, and the same for even number dates. Two-wheelers, CNG, hybrid and electric vehicles are exempted from this rule, as are women drivers, parents taking their children to school, ambulances and those with medical emergencies.
When the pilot phase of the odd-even rule began in Delhi in January, many startup ventures and organisations jumped at the opportunity to develop a business to counter this model. The good thing about their enthusiasm is that now, there are more ten apps that you can download to find a suitable carpooling option. Besides that, there are many other eco-friendly, less polluting alternatives of transport, from cycles to e-bikes and public transport. Here’s an aggregated list of apps and websites that you can use to make your commute a breeze:
Share Your Car Rides
While Uber, Ola and Meru have been around with carpooling options, there are a few newer apps that are dedicated solely to carpooling. Pikup is a sleek app that gives real-time updates on open slots for ride sharing through cars, cabs or autorickshaws. It also boasts of a closed community of verified commuters, so that safety of travellers isn’t compromised. What’s more, they have a women-only feature too. You can also get Orahi (on Android and iOS) and Odd Even Ride, which have similar features for carpooling. While you have to pay for rides with Orahi and Pikup, Odd Even Ride is free of cost. FrndiNeed and iUNIR help you connect with friends and people you know to commute. iUNIR, which launched in April this year, lets you connect with your Facebook and LinkedIn profiles, while FrndiNeed links you up with Facebook and the contacts in your phone.
Go Green With Cycles
Step up the pedal and lose some calories as you cycle your way to work. Or, if that’s too far, then ditch the car and cycle to the nearest metro stations. You don’t have to worry about locking or parking the cycles if you use the DMRC-run public bicycles. An initiative taken up by the government in 2015, the idea is to get people to use cycles in the vicinity of the metro stations. The DMRC tied up with Greenolution, a startup launched in 2007, to provide this service at metro stations such as Saket, Vishwa Vidyalaya, Hauz Khas, Akshardham, MG Road, Shastri Park, and Dwarka Sec. 14, and Neb Sarai. The first step is to register at Greenolution.com or at the cycle shelters at these stations. Then, pick up the cycle from the Primary Shelters at the metro stations and drop them off at the Secondary Shelters nearest to your home, and vice versa. The cycles are available at a nominal fee of Rs 10 per hour, from 8 AM to 8 PM on weekdays, and 9 AM to 4 PM on Sundays.
You can also register with Planet Green Bikes (PGB), an intra-city cycle sharing service. Use the PGB smart card to swipe and take a cycle and ride it to the PGB docking station closest to your destination. When you swipe out, you’ll get an SMS notifying that you’ve ended your ride, with a summary of your bill.
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Use Old-school Public Transport
Source: Wikimedia Commons
The Delhi government has issued several new routes and 900 more buses to reduce the number of cars on the road. According to DNA, out of the 555 routes that ply from the national capital to the city, the government is adding more buses on 346 routes. Along with this, there would be an additional 16 routes on areas around the city, and three new routes from Gurgaon to Noida.
If local bus transport seems too cumbersome, try Shuttl, an on-demand shuttle service app with 500 buses in its fleet. Find a bus route operated by Shuttl between your home and workplace, book the route, track the bus, and navigate your way to the pick up point, all through this app (available on Windows, iOS, and Android)
If you’re taking the metro, explore timings on Ridlr, an app that has an answer to all you public transport related queries. Get bus and metro timetables, locate bus stops, and find out the least traffic clogged route with real time traffic updates. Another alternative is to get the official Delhi Metro Rail app (on Android and iOS) by DMRC, where you can find out metro timings, last and first train timings, fares, distance, gate numbers, and more.
Call for On-Demand Rickshaws
Source: Wikimedia Commons
The Delhi government recently relaunched its all-inclusive transport app, PoochhO, developed by DIMTS. The government plans to integrate 90,000 autorickshaws under this app, so that users can get a real-time update of nearest autorickshaws and cabs. Look for a rickshaw, call the driver, and request for a ride.
Jugnoo, an app launched in 2014, assures you of reliable rickshaw rides, on-demand. According to its website, you can save up to 32% on rickshaw fares, while it works pretty much like an Uber or Ola, with real-time ride tracking. Get the app on Android, iOS, and Windows, and forget about haggling for rickshaw rides. Besides rickshaws, the app also lets you book for cabs, figure out bus routes and timings, and check for traffic.
Opt for E-biking and Bike Sharing
Hero Electric is offering about 100 e-bikes in the Delhi University and Rajiv Chowk areas. Download the DOT app to book your eco-friendly ride for free. You can charge the bike at Tata Power-designated charging ports at major metro stations, and park the bikes at NMDC-approved areas.
Besides this, Baxi is an on-demand bike sharing service currently available is Gurgaon and Faridabad. Much like Uber’s UberMOTO, you only have to look for a bike rider in your area and hitch a ride for nominal charges.