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Seniors Have Taken Over the Ride-Sharing App Via

Stashed in: Transportation!, Uber, Aging, Transportation, Aging, Lyft, Sharing Economy

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27% of Via users are over 55. Seems like it's very easy to use!

Via, the very-easy-to-use ride-share start-up, works like a mix between Uber and the city bus. In September 2013, it began by offering rides between the Upper East Side and midtown for $4. It’s since upped that to $5 for a ride anywhere between 110th Street and the southernmost tip of Manhattan but spent almost no money on advertising — the founders were concerned about keeping up with what they assumed would be massive demand. As a result, Via’s remained mostly off the radar, except with one group: senior citizens: 27 percent of Via riders are over 55, with 10 percent of those checking in at older than 65 (only 30 percent are between 25 and 34). 


Adele Ribolow-Berk thinks she found out about it last winter from Crain’s, but it also might’ve been word-of-mouth because, at 83, she says, she can’t quite remember. “The nicest thing is somehow I always manage to get in the front seat. I’m always sending emails to them about the drivers and how nice they are.” For a certain set, apparently, that star-rating system just isn’t quite expressive enough.

“We’ve tried Uber, but it’s more expensive and we like the idea of having people get on,” says Jo, 86, who started using Via when she and her husband, Dick, 88, moved here from Alaska last January. “We were having a hard time at first, and they were really helpful in teaching us how to order a car, so I baked them bread and sent it to headquarters with a driver.” As it turns out, there’s an even more specific group for whom an email just isn’t thanks enough. “They got a kick out of that!”

”I’ve actually met a couple of friends through the share-ride,” says Elaine, that earliest adopter. But her husband, Jerry, 70, hasn’t had the same luck: “There isn’t much interaction between the passengers,” he complains. Elaine interrupts — not so! “Jerry’s quieter than I am,” she says. “I talk about restaurants and show recommendations, and the woman who does my facials now was recommended from someone I met in a Via.”

as they should be!

They should be easy to use? Or they should be appealing to seniors?

Whoa, 88 year olds move to Manhattan from Alaska?!?! RESPECT, oldies!

Yeah I was thinking that's a bold move, too. 

That's a bold move, COTTON TOP!

adam, both. easy for anyone to use is great. Safety concerns are good for everyone. get seniors away from the steering wheel then get everyone away from the steering wheel.  

Agreed, Uber for seniors makes a lot of sense, Jared. Makes me want to try Via. 

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