Ola UPI Launched: Now Pay For Your Cab Rides Using UPI Without Any Third-Party App

Ola's UPI integration will make payments more seamless for its users, but it won't help cab drivers as much

Highlights
  • Ola has integrated UPI payments directly into the Ola Cabs app.
  • Users can pay for their rides using UPI by linking their bank account in the Ola app.
  • Ola UPI will be available to all users by the end of December 2023.
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Ola is one of the largest cab-hailing services in India with over 100 million active users. The company has recently gathered more attention for its Ola Electric two-wheelers, but its cabs segment remains its primary business generating four times more revenue.

Ola has now launched its own UPI payment service, integrated into the Ola Cabs app. Users can now pay for their cab rides using UPI directly within the Ola app, without going to a third-party UPI app such as Google Pay, PhonePe, etc. Let’s have a look at how Ola UPI will help its 2 million cab drivers accept payments more easily.

Ola UPI To Refine Customer-Driver Payments

Ola’s CEO Bhavish Aggarwal announced on Twitter that the company is revamping digital payments for both, Ola Cabs customers and drivers. The Ola App will soon get its own UPI interface allowing users to link their UPI bank accounts directly in the app.

Users will be able to pay for their cab rides using UPI without opening any third-party payments app. This will ease the payment process and make it slightly faster as the user will not have to open PhonePe, Paytm, or Google Pay separately.

Bhavish also mentions that Ola Cabs drivers can also show a QR code to the customer which can be scanned to complete the payment. It looks like the company has implemented this extra scan and pay feature as it’s more familiar among the masses who are used to scanning a QR.

Ola UPI will be launched in Bengaluru next week. By the end of December, the company will roll out this feature to all of its users across India. Ola’s CEO estimates that over 2 million cab drivers can become UPI-accepting merchants overnight.

Ola UPI Not As Beneficial For Cab Drivers

Ola CEO Bhavish Aggarwal teased Prime Plus, a premium cab service.

While the concept of built-in UPI in the Ola app sounds attractive from a cab user’s point of view, it won’t be as useful for cab drivers. This is because even if you are scanning the QR code on the driver’s mobile phone manually, Ola will continue to charge their commission for the ride and the cab driver will get paid the same amount, regardless if you use Ola UPI or any other UPI.

Cab users in India face multiple issues where drivers cancel rides due to online payments as they prefer cash. Hence, Ola UPI will not solve this problem, as the driver still has to pay a commission and does not receive payment directly in his bank account after the ride ends.

Even though Ola UPI will be available as an option to pay for your rides, drivers are still more likely to ask you for cash payments for their personal preference. It will be interesting to see how Ola encourages its drivers to accept Ola UPI.