Mobility company Bolt has teamed up with fintech start-up Strike to make contact-free tipping for taxi drivers a reality.
The partnership comes as Bolt witnesses an increase in taxi services as Covid-19 restrictions ease and people travel faster. Bolt entered the Irish market in early December with its taxi-hailing service, which rivals that offered by Free Now.
The company, founded in 2013 by then 19-year-old Estonian tech entrepreneur Markus Villig, has signed up more than 1,000 drivers in Dublin.
The start-up, which is also keen on providing shared e-scooter schemes locally once legislation allowing them on Irish roads is passed, said the deal with Strike would allow them to show appreciation for drivers.
The partnership allows customers to simply tap a driver's Strike tag or scan the QR code on display in their taxi using their phone and pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay. The Bolt driver receives the tip instantly.
"The last 12 months have heavily restricted drivers' ability to earn. As the country begins to reopen, demand will rise but cash is not used as much and therefore tipping will be down," said Bolt country manager Luke Mackey.
“Strike is a contactless and simple way for passengers to say thank you to the drivers who have still been on the road helping frontline workers move around during the pandemic.”
Strike, the brainchild of Oli Cavanagh and Charles Dowd, has come up with patent-pending technology that looks to resolve issues arising from the reduced use of cash, such as the inability to tip workers or make donations to charities.
The solution does not require payment terminals or for customers to download a mobile app. In addition to tags that can be worn by individuals, Strike also has wristbands, fobs and little pucks that can be attached to charity boxes and other objects.