Didi Chuxing is China’s largest ride-sharing platform, offering taxi, carpooling and other transport services. Having driven Uber out of China in 2016, Didi is actively growing its international footprint through various partnerships.
Didi Chuxing announced today that it’s bringing back Hitch, a carpooling function that matches private car owners and passengers who are heading the same direction. The service was indefinitely suspended nationwide in August last year after two murders of female passengers within three months.
The company said Hitch is coming back with a new “women’s safety program,” which includes a “Safety Assistant” in the app that offers “real-time support from safety specialists.” But Didi is also limiting the time women are allowed to use the feature. Women can use Hitch between 5am and 8pm, while men have until 11pm. Hitch rides will be limited to 50 kilometers (31 miles) in metro areas.
After the murders last year, Didi started a comprehensive safety overhaul. It added in-car audio recordings, a real-name verification system, and safety knowledge tests for drivers, among other measures.