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Didi to offer child car seats in Premier vehicles

By MA SI and ZHENG YIRAN | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-05-22 20:36

Didi Chuxing announced Monday it would start equipping Premier vehicles with child car seats, becoming one of the first on-demand transport platforms in China offering customized services for children's safety.

So far, the new service is available for users in eight Chinese cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing and Xi'an. It will be expanded to other cities later.

As a major component of Didi's one-stop transport system, Premier offers quality and professional services that give riders elevated experience. By employing a customer-orientated and data-driven approach, Didi Premier found that its core user group, aged between 25 to 39, has a growing need for better safety guarantees for their children on the ride.

"Up to 2016, there were 96 countries and regions that require using child car seats. Unfortunately, the list does not include China. Many cities like Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hangzhou have implemented local laws to promote the application of child car seats. For instance, some cities include the enforcement measures into the Law on the Protection for Minors. China does not have such legislation now, and we are actively fighting for it," said Pan Zengyou, director of the Child Passenger Safety Promotion Office.

To tap into the niche market and provide sophisticated services to users, Didi Premier is joining hands with Cybex, a German brand known for manufacturing reliable fitness equipment, to ensure a quality safety guarantee for the child riders.

"China is the biggest automobile market in the world, and it owns the largest child population. The nation's child safety awareness is weak. The correct way of riding in a car needs to be popularized. Fortunately, some cities,such as Shanghai, have implemented laws forcing the use of child car seats, marking the rise of child safety awareness," said Zhang Yun, general manager of Cybex China.

Meanwhile, Didi has selected a group of drivers with top-of-the-line service records and strong safety awareness for this particular service. These measures are taken to make sure that children aged between 9 months to 12 years old will have the safest trip.

Since a car seat is not available in every Premier car yet, users are advised to reserve a ride that has the service through the Didi app two hours in advance.

Didi will provide subsidies for the drivers to cover their additional costs. No extra fees will be charged for a car seat for now, but given the cost of pick-up and the efficiency of operation, a flexible pricing system might be introduced later.

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