A new rideshare company plans to launch in Columbia, South Carolina, in April. HopIn is a new service, which will operate similar to Uber and Lyft, but it plans to focus on safety and inclusivity principles.
HopIn is four years in the making and was started by Kingstree native Ron McKnight. According to McKnight, “The safety of our drivers and our riders is of much importance to us. We put the implementation of safety measures at the forefront of development and we’re sure our drivers and riders will benefit from the investment into those features.” The features McKnight is referring to includes the following:
- SOS Feature. The SOS safety feature providers riders with the ability to notify up to three people of their location and give the driver’s description and car information.
- Preferred Drivers. The app also allows riders to save preferred drivers to request when they’re looking for a ride.
- Premium Features. With the Premium version of the app, there’s an exclusive feature that lets female riders find a female driver.
In addition to the safety features discussed above, riders will be able to choose from a number of vehicle options, including standard vehicles, SUVs, and luxury vehicles.
McKnight originally got the idea for the app after losing his credit cards in New York City and having to buy a prepaid credit card to use for a ride home. Then, he discovered that other ridesharing apps do not accept prepaid credit cards: “It’s all about inclusion because those who came before me, they left out a certain demographic. There are so many individuals that are literally limited within everything that they’re doing, other than them being able to purchase prepaid cards.” While HopIn is headquartered in Columbia, McKnight hopes to expand the company to other cities on the East Coast and eventually offer the service nationwide. According to HopIn’s website, “HopIn is a ride share app designed to connect people through the power of inclusion. HopIn is committed to providing rides to everyone regardless of their zip code or economic status. We want your experience with us to be both an enjoyable one and most importantly a safe one. What started as a way of helping people move around from Point A to Point B, has become the illuminating force behind connecting each other with one of the most valued aspects of life itself: the human experience.”