HANOI -- Russian on-demand ride service inDriver has gained a toehold in Vietnam, starting in outlying areas ahead of an expansion into major metropolitan markets with its app feature of letting passengers negotiate their own fares.
The company, which has contracts with drivers of 260 cars and 300 motorbikes, debuted in such cities as the central beach resort of Da Nang, according to local media. It expanded last month to Can Tho in the south, known for its floating markets, and operates in the northern port city of Hai Phong and the central coastal province of Thua Thien Hue.
Riders say what they are willing to pay, and drivers either accept or negotiate the amounts.
Passengers can also choose drivers based on such criteria as estimated arrival time and vehicle model.
The company says it differs from competitors that charge more during rush hour or other high-demand times under so-called surge pricing. inDriver boasts more than 50 million users in 31 countries.
Singapore's Grab commanded 73% of the Vietnamese market in the first half of 2019, according to U.S. firm ABI Research. Local player Be trailed with a share of about 16%, followed by Indonesia's Go-Jek, at around 10%.