The Digital Age Of Carpools

OPINION
By Angela Gosnell
The Knoxville News-Sentinel, Tenn.

It seems every month now there’s a new addition to the on-demand sharing economy, and last month was no exception.

“Shuddle,” a ride-sharing service described as “Uber for kids,” is now adding a carpool extension, jumping on the bandwagon of LyftLine and UberPool, which offer on-demand carpools for strangers going in the same direction at the same time.

That’s right, it’s a car service for kids, so that you can save yourself an extra trip.

Adding the carpool feature allows the service to be more accessible to families that can’t afford the ride solo, just like sharing a taxi with someone rather than taking one on your own.

“We’ve heard people say that at $15 or $16 a ride, is that really a service all busy families can access?” Carly Lutz, Shuddle’s senior vice president of family experience, said in an interview with Forbes. “We feel very strongly that at $8 a ride, it starts to become more available and accessible to a broader group.”

Is Shuddle’s carpool service really so much different than organizing a carpool in your neighborhood or school?

“Families are trying to do this work anyway,” says Lutz. “I know that my 8-year-old daughter is going to be at school or camp with a friend. We know who the families are who are going to be at these activities, but actually figuring out the carpool is complicated. What Shuddle Carpool allows families to do is literally say to each other, let’s carpool together, we’re both going to camp.”

When I was a kid we didn’t have school buses in our area, so my parents arranged a carpool with our neighbors to get to and from school each day. It seems Shuddle carpool service is almost the same thing, but fast forwarded to today’s busy world of working parents on tight schedules with limited time.

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