As cities reopen and tens of millions of people start moving again, Uber is committed to keeping its communities safe and setting the highest possible safety standards. Over the past few months, our tech and safety teams have been working relentlessly to build a new product experience to help protect everyone, every time you use Uber.

Today, we have launched a range of COVID-19 specific safety features and policies that will change the way you ride the next time you use the app. The announcements include an interactive Go Online Checklist for both riders and drivers, a mandatory mask policy for riders and drivers, pre-trip mask verification selfies for drivers, an updated post-trip feedback mechanism and a cancellation policy. 

Complementing these safety features are Uber’s efforts to ramp up the distribution of safety supplies, such as masks and sanitisers, worth  5 million BDT, free of cost, to drivers.  

Aimed at building a new product experience during these challenging times, today’s announcements include:

    • Go Online Checklists: Before a driver can go online, they’ll be asked to confirm, via a new Go Online Checklist, that they’ve taken certain safety measures and are wearing a face mask. Our drivers also self-declare that they don’t have any Covid-19 symptoms before they can go online. They are suggested to not drive if they have those symptoms. A similar checklist has been built for riders as well. Before every trip, they must confirm that they’ve taken precautions such as wearing a face mask and washed or sanitized their hands. 
    • Mask Verification: Before drivers are able to start accepting trips, they will be asked to take a selfie with a mask on. Uber’s new technology will verify the driver is wearing a mask.
    • Accountability for all: We are adding new options for feedback including if a rider or driver is not wearing a mask or face cover. 
    • Updated cancellation policy: Drivers and riders can cancel trips if they don’t feel safe, including if a user is not wearing a mask or face cover. 
    • New seat limits: To allow for space between the driver and rider during an Uber ride, we’re advising riders to sit in the rear seat. Only two riders will be allowed in a car other than the driver partner.
    • Rideshare Health & Safety Education: Working with global and local public health authorities, we have compiled safety tips and recommendations that will be sent to all riders and drivers. 
    • Safety Kits Distribution: Safety supplies, such as masks and sanitisers, will be distributed free of cost to drivers across Bangladesh. 
    • COVID hub for drivers: Uber has built an in-app COVID hub for its driver partners to access information on safety. The hub has a new in-app safety feature which will notify drivers to replenish their safety supplies after they’ve completed a predetermined number of trips. The notification will provide a list of convenient pick up points from where they can pick up the safety supplies.

Recently, Uber spearheaded the formation of a Transport Safety Alliance (TSA) in Bangladesh to generate safety awareness amongst consumers, and equip drivers with necessary health and safety supplies to ensure safer rides. As a part of the Alliance, Uber and its allies distributed key safety supplies such as masks, soaps, tissues and sanitisers to its drivers.

During the first phase of the crisis, it’s been heartening to see our communities come together with a collective sense of responsibility. As we move into the new normal, it’s our goal to encourage this same sense of shared responsibility: Uber, riders, drivers—we all have a role to play in keeping each other safe!