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Taxi Apps in India: Uber and Ola Cabs


Date20 Aug 2021


One of the most favoured means of transportation in India are taxis. It is more common than in Germany to take a taxi in Indian cities – and it’s cheaper! Taxi apps in India are becoming more popular by the day. With Uber and Ola Cabs you can not only book taxis, but Rickshaws, Scooters and Rides for long distances. 

How do these taxi apps in India work? What are the advantages and disadvantages of using a taxi app in India? And what are the differences between Uber and Ola in India? A convenient and cheap option to travel in Indian cities is to take a cab!

Uber and Ola in India – that’s easy!

No matter if you need a taxi right away or if you want to make sure you have one for your ride to the airport the next day, Uber and Ola are suited for both. Just enter your pick-up location and the destination in the taxi app and wait until it finds available cabs close to you. Both location and destination can be selected quite precisely so your ride really takes you from door to door. Before booking, you’ll be provided with route, price and duration – then the choice of booking is yours. If the demand is high the prices will also increase. 

When a driver has confirmed the ride, you’ll be given his location and the time it takes for him to pick you up. In big cities it often only takes a few minutes. In places where less drivers are available you need to wait a bit longer. Additionally, you will be able to see a photo of the driver, his name and his number plate. With this information it should be easy to spot him while approaching your location. 

Sometimes the driver will call you as soon as he has accepted the ride to confirm the destination. 

After the ride you can either pay with Credit Card or in cash – of course only the price that has been calculated in the app before the ride. Afterwards the app will ask you to rate the ride. Be aware that your driver can also rate you as a customer. 

Advantages for using a taxi app in India

Of course you can always hail a taxi or a rickshaw right from the streets. So why even use Uber or Ola in India? We have listed some advantages of taxi apps in India as to why they are facilitating your travel. 

The first advantage is that the price is calculated by the taxi app. That saves you the nerve-wrecking negotiations and the feeling of being ripped off. Especially in cities where it is not common to use the taxameter, taxi apps like Ola and Uber can be a blessing. You only pay what has been agreed upon in the beginning while booking the ride. 

Another plus is that you can decide on an exact pick-up location and a destination for drop off. This will save you awkward explanations with hands and feet to make your driver understand where you actually want to go. FYI: Most taxi drivers in India do not know how to read a map and some might not be able to read at all. 

Considering your own safety, the taxi apps in India give you several options to feel safer than in a normal cab. First of all, you can track the route in your app to make sure the driver is not taking you off-route. Additionally, Uber as well as Ola provide an SOS/ emergency button in the app. When pressing this button you’ll be immediately directed to customer service to provide help. In Bengaluru and Hyderabad Ola even has tied up with the local police stations which will be informed when you press the button. Both apps have a feature which allows you to directly share the information of your ride with friends and family. 

Although taxi apps in India are very convenient, they are often more expensive than normal cabs and rickshaws. We recommend not to rely fully on taxi apps like Uber and Ola due to occasional cancellations by drivers. 

Uber or Ola – what’s better? 

We don’t want to judge both the competitors but give you an insight about the differences between Ola Cabs and Uber in India. 

Ola is originally from Bengaluru and does very well in keeping up with the giant competitor from the US. In addition to English Ola also offers several Indian languages for using the app. Moreover, Ola is spread widely across the country while covering almost twice as many cities as Uber. Music lovers will be happy to find access to Amazon Music in most Ola Cabs. 

The downside is, to install the Ola app you need to have an Indian SIM card.  If you are using the Uber app anyway, it will detect your new location as India and switch immediately – very easy! 

Let us know about your experience with taxi apps in India in addition to other means of transportation. Leave a comment, share and like!

Written by: Tanja Holbe

Cover Foto: Uber and Ola Cabs in India (Credit: Arihant Daga - Unsplash

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