Ridesharing, a slightly more formalized system of carpooling, is something that never really caught on in the United States. I blame the FBI. For whatever reason, Americans prefer to drive their own cars or pay for taxis, fly, or even occasionally take busses. In other countries, especially in Europe, booking a seat in a stranger’s car to share the costs of a ride is becoming increasingly popular, both for long and short distance trips. In large part this is due to BlaBlaCar, a company with big funding that’s buying up competitors and building a very effective network of drivers and riders. Now in 22 countries BlaBlaCar is mainly on the European continent but they have recently expanded into Mexico, India and Brazil.
This year I started with 78 ridesharing websites in my spreadsheet. I hesitate to call them companies because in this category there are actually a number of non-profits and public service organizations. I found 14 that stopped operations, a few of which were bought by BlaBlaCar. Here’s the list of obituaries:
- The Car Share was a directory of car sharing services that covered Australia, Canada, the US and Europe shut down. I guess I’m providing that service now.
- Go2gether offered ridesharing in Canada, they launched in 2014
- Ridepost, a US based ridesharing business that launched in 2013 appears to have pivoted to a bus and shuttle booking platform for businesses.
- Carma launched in 2007 covering Norway, Ireland and the USA
- MeBuddie was an India based ridesharing service launched in 2012
- Coride offered ridesharing in the US, launched in 2014
- RideShare.us was one of the oldest ridesharing platforms in the US (around for 12+ years!)
- Rides, a Mexican ridesharing company was acquired by BlaBlaCar
- Carpooling, a European ridesharing company launched in 2001 is now fully integrated into Blablacar
- Gumtree’s Singapore site shut down and it looks like they stopped offering ridesharing in Australia. But they still have ridesharing listings in the UK and South Africa.
- Viadedo served the Paraguay rideshare market, launched in 2013
- Yebame offered ridesharing in Chile, launched in 2015
- Arcade City was an Austin, Texas ridesharing site launched in 2016 after Uber and Lyft pulled out of that city. They still have a generic website up advertising “peer to peer everything” but with no content so it looks like they got out of the ridesharing business.