Meituan to Launch Car-Hailing Service in Multiple Cities

After operating a car-hailing service in Nanjing for 10 months, Meituan expanded its service to include Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Hangzhou, Wenzhou, Fuzhou and Xiamen on December 28.

Meituan said it will roll out its car-hailing service in cities if 200,000 interested users sign up. Users can receive three coupons for up to the starting price of a local ride. Drivers who register as Meituan drivers are eligible to receive a “no service charge” privilege.

From this afternoon, Meituan users in the seven cities can see a “car-hailing” link at the center of the home page in their Meituan App. Although the service is available in the App, it is not officially open. Users in Beijing who click the “car-hailing” button will be taken to a promotional page that says, “Meituan Car-Hailing Beijing Station. You have the final say on when we launch our service! Service will be available after 200,000 registrations.” Users can click the “sign up” button to vote for the new city to include in Meituan’s car-hailing service. After a one-click, the page will show vote status.

When drivers register on the Meituan car-hailing platform, they can get “no service charge” privilege in first three months. It is worth noting that Meituan car-hailing charges 8 percent of the fare in Nanjing. To attract more drivers, Meituan launched no-commission benefits, implying how Meituan values drivers.

Wang Huiwen, senior vice president of Meituan Dianping and president of the transportation division of Meituan, said the car-hailing business was driven by user demand. Thirty percent of Meituan’s active users have travel needs. Meituan said the transportation division had a team of more than 200 people since the car-hailing service launched in Nanjing 10 months ago. Its daily orders already exceed 100,000.

In October, Meituan Dianping completed a new round financing of $4 billion. Soon afterward, Meituan Dianping announced an upgrade in the organizational structure, setting up its transportation division. On the basis of the original dining, shopping and hotel, four LBS scenes have been formed.