By Mark Kawalya
The Ugandan ride-hailing space has registered a new entrant that promises to prioritise safety and convenience in its mobility offering. Safari Buddy will connect riders to its team of drivers using its application that is safety optimised and integrates features like emergency assistance, real time tracking, and safe payment options.
Safari Buddy’s CEO, Davilla Coopers, says the firm is committed to community involvement, and this is the distinguishing feature between it and other ride hailing companies.
“We are excited to bring Safari Buddy to Uganda and contribute to the growth of the local economy. We believe that our commitment to safety and community involvement sets us apart, and we can’t wait for our users to experience exactly that,” she said.
Ms.Davilla added that Safari Buddy has initiated partnerships with local organisations to be a source of employment for drivers and use some of the profits they make for charitable causes.
Drivers will offer the service for the first six months without remitting any fees to the company, enabling them to test out the service. A noteworthy mention about the firm’s service is that drivers have the ability to determine their own trip prices, giving them better control of their earnings.
Safari Buddy is not restricted to urban rides but also has the option for upcountry trips, which will allow riders to better the country. The firm also has a parcel option for users who want to send cargo or even hire out Safari Buddy cars.
“Safari Buddy is also proud to offer boat cruise bookings, giving riders the opportunity to enjoy Uganda’s stunning lakes and rivers in style. The app is now available for download in Kampala, Entebbe and Jinja, with plans to expand to additional cities in the near future,” she said.
It is going to be interesting to see how Safari Buddy handles Uganda’s stiff ride-sharing competition, with Kampala being the epicentre for most rides ordered. Early entrants like Uber, Bolt, and Little Ride are not about to give up their client base without a fight.
Safari may have an advantage in its product offering with so many types of rides to choose from and a wider geographic area of operation, although it remains to be seen if a wide product offering will give the firm the traction it desires.