Taxi-booking app Karhoo is expected to launch its own private-hire car service here in the next few months, a move poised to compete for a share of the market with Uber and Grab.
Karhoo is projected to have 2,000 private-hire cars supplied from rental car and limousine companies. This is in addition to the collaboration with ComfortDelGro and Prime Taxis, which will give Karhoo access to a fleet of more than 17,000 cabs, more than 60 per cent of Singapore’s taxi population.
The app had been expected to launch in 2016, Karhoo was given the green light by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) in February to operate under the Third-Party Taxi Booking Service Providers framework, which regulates cab-booking apps.
Similar to Uber and Grab, Karhoo determines a user’s location and shows the availability of cars in their area. Trips can be sorted by price, estimated time of arrival or type of vehicle, if there’s a need for a limousine or a few additional seats.
The app will also allow commuters to do price comparison and choose not just available cabs, but also private-hire cars.
One additional advantage that consumer will get to enjoy is the advanced booking option which is not readily available on Uber and Grab. The advanced booking option on Karhoo allows riders to pre-book up to a year in advance.
UPDATE ON 8 NOVEMBER 2016
After much hype and fanfare, Karhoo has announced that it will seized operations in Singapore after many months of preparation and raising US$250m in investments.
Despite boasting claims that they are bigger than Uber, Karhoo has failed to take off. Many Karhoo employees claimed that they were unpaid in salary and CPF contributions. CPF has initiated actions against Karhoo Singapore to recover the arrears owed to its employees.
Karhoo is the latest in line of mobile booking app to fail in Singapore after the failure of Hailo and Easy Taxi