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What Is FREENOW & How Does It Work For Riders In 2024?

FREENOW In a Nutshell

  • Launched in 2009, mytaxi pioneered smartphone taxi booking.
  • When it evolved to Free Now, it began offering car rentals and micro-mobility options like scooters.
  • Free Now operates in over 150 cities across Europe.
  • With Free Now, you can book rides, track arrivals, and pay automatically.
  • Free Now offers regular cabs, larger cabs, scooters, and even electric black cabs.
  • Free Now’s convenience makes it slightly more expensive than regular cabs.
  • Free Now uses licensed taxis for enhanced safety.

What is FREENOW?

mytaxi, currently known as Free Now, is a leading taxi app in Europe. It offers a direct connection with your cab driver, providing a similar user experience to other known applications like Uber and Lyft.

The application received updates over time. Now, it doesn’t only connect its users with cab drivers; it offers car rental and micro-mobility options too.

If you’re anywhere in Europe, you may consider using Free Now, as its prices are relatively affordable.

mytaxi: How Did It Become Free Now?

mytaxi was founded in 2009 in Hamburg, Germany, by Niclaus Mewes, Alexander Mönch, and Sven Külper. At the time, it was the world’s first application to allow users to book and pay for taxis using their smartphones.

This idea took the market by storm. It was simple enough, but quite handy. People no longer had to go to spots where cabs usually pass through. They can now hail a cab from the comfort of their homes.

Like Uber, mytaxi allows its users to book a taxi through the application, track its arrival on the map, and handle payment automatically without relying on cash.

By 2012, it had a driver network of over 50,000 taxis and was available in 10 European countries, and it was recognized as the leading taxi e-hailing app in Europe.

Four years later, mytaxi was acquired by Daimler A, a German automotive corporation. Through its funding and resources, mytaxi expanded all over Europe and even reached South American countries.

By 2017, it had over 100,000 registered taxis in over 50 cities and brought several companies under the mytaxi family, such as Romania’s Clever Taxi.

The app kept improving, providing newer features like booking a taxi in advance, rating drivers, saving favorite locations, splitting fares with friends, sharing estimated arrival times with others, and more.

In 2019, mytaxi announced its rebranding to “Free Now,” which would allow it to compete with other popular applications like Uber and Lyft. It also got integrated with Beat, another ride-hailing app that Daimler Group and BMW also own. Currently, Free Now operates in over 150 cities.

Where Is Free Now Available?

Free Now is unavailable in the US, as the American market is already saturated with major ride-hailing apps. It’s currently available in:

  • United Kingdom
  • Austria
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Poland
  • Spain

How Does FREENOW Work?

Free Now works like other hailing apps; you start by setting your location, requesting a ride, and waiting in the pickup location until your driver arrives.

Different Vehicle Options

Free Now isn’t limited to regular sedans; you have a decent range of options:

Cabs

Cabs are the standard taxis that you see driving everywhere. They typically have a fee that’s quite similar to regular cabs.

Larger Cabs

If many people are with you or if you have a lot of luggage, you can select XL cabs with more space. Naturally, the fee will be a little higher.

Scooters

If it’s just you and you want to get somewhere fast and don’t mind riding behind someone, getting a scooter can be a great option. Not only will you save time, but you’ll also save money, as scooters are the cheapest option.

EV Black Cabs

There’s the EV black cab option if you want to reduce your carbon footprint and get an electric cab. However, EVs are considered a premium service, and they’re often more expensive.

How to Use Free Now

Here are the detailed steps to get you started:

Step 1: Download the App

You may download the app through the Play Store or App Store. Alternatively, you can go to the app’s official website and scan the QR code.

Step 2: Create an Account

You’ll be prompted to enter your email and password once you choose your country and city from the dropdown list of available countries. Since there isn’t a password confirmation box, make sure you double-check you’ve written your password correctly.

Step 3: Enter Your Payment Method

After creating an account, you should input your credit/debit card details to allow automatic payment. You may also use PayPal to pay.

Step 4: Request a Ride

Before requesting a ride, the application will ask you to provide location permission. After you allow it, you’ll be presented with a map where you can select or manually input your destination.

Step 5: Go to the Meeting Point

The meeting point is often automatically located where you’re standing. However, if you are in an inaccessible location or requesting a ride from home, you’ll be required to walk a few minutes until you can get to where the cab can pick you up.

If the pickup location or the cab that shows up doesn’t match what’s described in the app, don’t get in the vehicle and contact Free Now.

Once you arrive and the taxi driver marks the trip as completed, the funds will automatically transfer from your account to theirs. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Free Now More Expensive than Regular Cabs?

Yes, Free Now charges an extra fee over regular cabs because it makes the process much easier. Fortunately, it won’t hurt your budget since it’s typically around €1.

Is Free Now Safe to Use?

Yes, Free Now is safe since it has been around for almost 15 years. As long as the car and driver that show up match the description you see on the application, you’re good to go. Also, since you’re getting licensed cabs, it’ll be safer than Lyft and Uber.

Is Free Now Cheaper than Uber?

Yes, in most cases, Free Now is cheaper than Uber. It utilizes standard, regulated taxi fares compared to Uber’s dynamic fares, which could dramatically increase if you’re in a surge.

The Verdict

Free Now takes the convenience of private car-hailing and applies it to relatively safer taxi-hailing. The additional advantage of being somewhat cheaper than regular car-hailing makes it worth a try if you’re anywhere in the UK.

Download the application from the official website and give it a try. If you have any questions, contact customer support. They’re known to be quite helpful.

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