US-based cab aggregator Uber today said it will roll out an insurance programme for over 4.5 lakh of its driver-partners in India in partnership with ICICI Lombard General Insurance. The programme, which will go live from September 1, will be extended for free to driver-partners aged 18-65 years. Uber currently has a similar offerings in Indonesia and Myanmar.
Uber, which is locked in an intense battle for leadership with SoftBank-backed Ola in India, counts India among its top markets. It claims to have seen a 115 percent increase in number of completed trips on its platform in July this year over the year-ago period in India.
The insurance offered will cover accidental death and disablement, hospitalisation and outpatient medical treatment in case of an accident while the driver-partner is using the Uber app (available for trip requests, en route or on a trip).
The coverage includes Rs 5 lakh in the event of death, up to Rs 5 lakh for permanent disability, up to Rs 2 lakh in the event of hospitalisation, with a sub-limit of up to Rs 50,000 for outpatient treatment. Apart from insurance, Uber has also rolled out features like pause requests and in-app chat to enhance experience for driver-partners.
"These innovations and partnerships are a reflection of our commitment to listen to our driver-partners and act on it to ensure that Uber is not just the most attractive opportunity but also the most preferred choice," Uber India Head of Central Operations Pradeep Parameswaran told reporters in New Delhi.
The partnership with ICICI Lombard will provide a safety net for driver-partners, who are a very important part of Uber's growth journey, he added. Parameswaran said Uber has also extended support hours for driver-partners from 12 hours (8AM-8PM) to 18 hours (6AM- 12 midnight), apart from emergency assistance (12 midnight- 6AM).
Uber has also partnered with AISECT to pilot a programme to create Whatsapp-enabled modules to teach drivers basic english conversational skills to help them improve their ratings on the platform.