Andre Wehner, Chief Digital Officer at ŠKODA AUTO, said, “ŠKODA AUTO is transforming into a provider of integral mobility services. There are many aspects to mobility. ŠKODA is therefore developing mobility concepts, which allow us to offer our customers tailor-made solutions to suit their individual needs. For the past two years, CareDriver has been valuably contributing to society in Germany and positive feedback from our customers has convinced us to now launch this service in Prague as well.”
Jarmila Plachá, Head of ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab, added, “The innovative CareDriver mobility and social care service brings together individual support and mobility and has proven useful in everyday life – also thanks to the intensive support of ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab. We would therefore like to expand the project into the Czech Republic and also offer mobility as a service to those who aren’t mobile for whatever reason.”
CareDriver guarantees transport services for children, the elderly and those with disabilities. In addition to providing transport, specially trained drivers also look after their customers, if necessary. Typical customers include parents for whom CareDriver can take responsibility for the school run. Furthermore, the service can assist the elderly with visits to the hospital or when going shopping and can also be used by people who require support due to health reasons.
Suitable drivers, referred to as ‘CareProfs’, are selected following a strict procedure. Each care professional is vetted against a 10-point checklist and is subsequently continuously assessed. In addition to experience with children or the elderly, they must also demonstrate their social and communicative skills and have a clear criminal record. Drivers must also have held a driving licence for a minimum of 3 years. This means that CareDriver customers can count on friendly and qualified staff.
When the project begins in Prague, ŠKODA AUTO will provide four OCTAVIA COMBIs at a special rate. Collaboration partners will provide further assistance if required, for example with the transporting of wheelchairs. Bookings will be made via the website, the CareDriver app (available for Android and iOS) or by telephone. Customers will pay for the mobility service based on how long they use it for; a 20-km journey is included in the base price. CareDriver will begin operation in Prague in summer 2019.
Founded as a start-up, CareDriver has already been running in Germany for over two years – initially in Munich and, since April this year, also in Hamburg. Several partnerships have already been set up in Hamburg on the initiative of ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab in order to further develop CareDriver and offer it to corporate customers in future too. With an average of 600 journeys per month, CareDriver has established itself as a qualified support and mobility services provider. The project’s entry into the Czech market is based on the positive experience gained in Germany, and there are also plans to expand into the Chinese market in collaboration with ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab China. To this end, CareDriver will be tailored to suit the requirements of Chinese customers.
As part of its 2025 Strategy, ŠKODA has defined the topics of e-mobility and digitalisation as cornerstones for the company’s future orientation. The development of new mobility and connectivity solutions plays a key role in this. With ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab Prague as a think tank, the company is boosting its transformation from purely a car manufacturer into a provider of integral mobility concepts.