The Ultimate Guide to Blablacar: The Carpool App

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The sharing economy is a new model of economy which aims to produce common value on the basis of new forms of organization of exchanges.

Sharing rides is an easy way to cut pollution, build community and save money.

Money is often the number one factor holding us back from traveling.

In a world of great financial concern, saving money is really important as it helps protect you in the event of a financial emergency.

We are then witnessing the creation of new concepts that allow us to reduce our expenses and that allow us to travel at a lower cost.

In this guide you will learn everything you need to know about Blablacar, a trusted carpooling platform that offers superb services and allows you to travel cheaply and contribute to saving our planet.

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1. What Is BlaBlaCar?

Blablacar is a carpooling platform that connects drivers and passengers who wish to share the same journey in the same car and split the associated costs. It was founded in 2006 by Frédéric Mazzella and operates in more than 22 countries across Europe, the United States, India, Latin America, and Russia. The company headquarters are located in Paris, France.

The carpooling service provided by Blablacar is very secure. Drivers must provide information such as their age, driving record, vehicle type and license plate number which is then verified by Blablacar before they can be approved as a driver. Passengers also need to verify their identity with a valid phone number or email address. Both drivers and passengers are required to have profiles with ratings so other users can view feedback from previous trips before booking a ride. This helps ensure safety for all users of the platform.

Users can book rides on Blablacar through the website or Blablacar mobile app (available for iOS and Android). The main purpose of the platform is to offer long distance carpooling but recently it has expanded its services to include short distance trips as well. For example, there is now ‘BlaBlaCar Daily’ which offers daily commuting options for those looking for an affordable way to get around town. There is also ‘BlaBlaBus’ which provides direct bus rides between major cities at budget-friendly prices.

In addition to providing an economical solution to transportation needs, Blablacar puts an emphasis on sustainability by reducing carbon emissions that would otherwise be produced through individual vehicles traveling long distances without passengers sharing them. By not offering traditional taxi rides but instead focusing on carpooling services they actively help combat global warming while providing users with an affordable alternative means of transport.

BlaBlaCar Bus

BlaBlacar has taken an extraordinary path in its ten years of operation.

In 2019, BlaBlaCar announced the acquisition of Ouibus, a leading French long-distance bus company.

OuiBus already has a large network of bus lines in Europe, covering ten countries (France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Germany), with over 300 destinations and 12,000 bus routes.

Main partners include:

  • National Express (Royaume-Uni)
  • Alsa (Espagne)
  • Marinobus (Italie)

Some of the main and popular destinations you can find are:

  • Birmingham to London
  • Paris to Milan
  • Brussel to Paris
  • Barcelona to Paris

You can take a look at their interactive map to find the bus to your next destination.

Each bus is equipped with:

  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Electrical outlets
  • Reclining seats with adjustable footrest
  • Individual lighting
  • Air conditioning

BlaBlaCar Daily

In April 2021 BlaBlaCar raised $115 millions from an existing investor.

These funds were used to develop their Daily Carpooling option.

BlaBlaDaily is a mobile app available for Iphone and Android devices.

BlaBlaCar Daily aims to accelerate its development in “home-work” journeys while turning to short-distance daily trips, such as going to a friend's house or going to his sports training.

The app allows users to locate carpoolers and passengers live on the map.

With this new urban transportation app, they enter in competition with Uber. The American technology company has the biggest impact on the environment and is taking action increasing their green rides option.

Keep in mind that the San Francisco headquartered company is illegal in some European countries.

Take a look at our guide to Uber in France and Italy.

2. Blablacar Founders & CEO

Blablacar was founded in the year 2006 by Frédéric Mazzella, Francis Nappez, Nicolas Brusson. Frédéric Mazzella is currently the CEO of the long distance carpool app.

The company is headquartered in Paris.

3. The History of Blablacar

Every company has a history, even Bestreferraldriver has one and we love to tell you as some big brands like Instacart, DoorDash and Uber were created.

According to the BlaBlaCar archives the company's founding idea came from a "simple idea" - what if you could share a ride right from your mobile phone?

During his studies at Stanford, Frédéric Mazzella and his friends traveled to college every morning using carpool lanes, from which they saved a lot of time.

It was in 2005 when Frédéric Mazzella, back in France, was looking for a train ticket to visit his family for Christmas, but he could not find any.

He then tried to find someone who would take the same route as him, but found no availability. Finally, he ended up traveling with his sister who made a 13 km detour to pick him up.

Along the way, Frédéric Mazzella, seeing the number of cars with only one passenger, sees an interesting market and imagines a carpooling service synchronized via the Internet.

He realizes that finding a long ride when needed is quite a hassle, and any technology that will ease the process will surely be a hit.

Thus was born the Blablacar concept.

how does blablacar work

4. How Does Blabla Car Sharing Work?

The app works very similar to the Waze Carpool app. When posting their ad, the driver sets a price per passenger based on a recommendation made by the platform. Usually, the price should not exceed the normal cost of the trip so that the driver cannot make it a part of the sale. This is because carpooling must remain a sharing of costs.

To create your account follow our step by step tutorial:

  • Open your web browser and navigate to Blablacar or download the app.
  • Select Sign Up in the upper-right corner of the screen. You can login with the Facebook account, Apple account (in this case you do not have to create an username and password) or with an email address.
  • If you use create a new account using your email, you have to fill out the form with the required personal information (Mr. / Mrs., name, surname, email, password, password confirmation, year of birth
  • Enter your mobile phone number
  • Confirm your email address

Once you complete the registration you are ready to use the ride sharing service to find your next rides.

Members can customize their profile with:

  • A personal image
  • Trip preferences: If you like to chat, listen to music and more

💡 PRO TIP: Customizing your profile is the easier way to find co-travellers tailored to your interests!

5. Which Areas Are Served By Blablacar Car Sharing?

BlaBlaCar is one of the best carpool apps in Europe, South America and India. The platform is currently available in the following countries:

  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • France
  • Germany
  • Hungary
  • India
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Serbia
  • Slovakia
  • Spain
  • Turkey
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom

Introducing... BlaBlaCar's Six Principles!

Explore BlaBlaCar's culture through our six key principles! To channel our growth while staying close to our core mission, our team has crowdsourced six Principles that act as a compass guidin...

6. Is BlaBlaCar Safe To Use?

When it comes to rides, safety is really important. Ride hailing companies ensure safety in their platforms with background checks and rating systems .

Today, many people prefer to travel alone for the sake of caution than to carpool with strangers. How Did Blablacar Gain The Trust Of Its Users? In order to overcome this obstacle, the founder of Blablacar has set up a system encouraging users of the platform to post their photo and to comment on their drivers or passengers after each trip.

Riders can also indicate the level of "blah" to let their passengers know if they are chatty during the journey or if they prefer to travel in silence. Finally, women can specify in their advertisements if they only want to travel with women.

One of the strengths of Blablacar is the fact that you pay directly through the app. This settles last minute withdrawals. In short, everything has been put in place by Frédéric Mazzella to gain the trust of Blablacar users.

7. How Much Does Blablacar Cost?

The BlaBlaCar app is free. Then, if you are a passenger, you pay a variable price. BlaBlaCar applies a commission on each ride. The good news is that the app uses a system of upfront prices, so you do not have to be worried about hidden fees.

Carpooling you will avoid the variable in the Uber pricing model called surge pricing.

To give you an example, here is the breakdown of BlaBlaCar fees in France:

A fixed amount of € 0.89 + 11.88% including tax of the amount of the journey, with a ceiling of 20% of the total price.

Basically, when a driver posts an ad for a given trip, BlaBlaCar suggests them a price based on:

  • The number of miles traveled
  • Estimated fuel consumption
  • Any tolls and vehicle maintenance

Prices range from € 6.5 / km per passenger for a highway trip to € 4.8 / km per passenger for a road trip. The driver can then adjust the price according to his wishes, however with a limit of 50% upwards.

To give you an idea, a Brussels-Paris trip will cost you, as a passenger, from €16 to €30.

There is a big difference between BlaBlaCar and rideshare companies . Indeed, ride-sharing apps help people get from point A to point B at the tap of a finger and drivers make money using their car or renting one with rental platforms .

BlaBlaCar is not one of the apps that pay you to drive . The idea for the driver is not to make a profit. Basically, car owners can find co-travellers and get compensation for the expenses they incur.

Related Aricle: How Much Does Uber Cost

Our Blablacar Experience From Paris To Milan

At Bestreferraldriver we like to share our experience with you. Some of our members tried the car sharing app on a trip from Paris to Milan. Here is our experience:

In France, the offer is large and it is easy to find a seat in a car to move from one city to another as long as you are flexible with the hours and the meeting point.

Traveling with locals allowed us to make great encounters. Before arriving in Milan, we traveled from Amsterdam to Paris by carpooling.

We quickly sympathized with our "driver" of the day. So much so that, when we learned during the trip that our accommodation reservation for the same evening was canceled, she called on a friend from Milan to help us find a plan B, even though we had known each other for barely a few minutes!

Blablacar Faq

Why Is Blablacar Not In The US?

If you are a reader from North America, you probably already appreciate the advantages of carpooling with Uber and Lyft.

So, why is BlaBlaCar not in the US?

In an interview at the Tribune, Frédéric Mazzella said: “The United States is a complicated country for long-distance carpooling. apps like bla bla car, including Zimride, NuRide, and GoLoco have tried and failed.

The first reason is financial: gas and cars are cheaper and highways are free to some extent. Driving a kilometer costs two times less than in France, and even three times less if we take the ratio of GDP per capita.

In terms of costs, the financial incentive is globally three times less strong. The second reason is structural: the cities are very distant and very spread out, and there are not so many public transportation, which can require long detours to pick up and drop off passengers.”

Are There Other Apps Like BlaBlaCar?

On the internet, there are many platforms offering the same services (connecting users through advertisements) as Blablacar, but without applying reservation fees. These platforms remain only a small concern for Blablacar because they are not fully developed due to non-profitability.

You can also find on social networks like Facebook, carpooler networking groups grouped by targeted geographic area.

Today the main alternative to BlaBlaCar are:

  • Waze Carpool
  • Carma

Is Bla Bla Car Safe in India?

Based on the feedback of Blablacar members, the company has introduced government ID verification for members as a measure to improve safety and security for its rides.

Travel The World Cheap With BlaBlaCar

To travel cheap you do not need your hitchhiker's thumb. Now you know how BlaBlaCar works and what its peculiarities are. BlaBlaCar is the cheapest way to travel for passengers and for drivers who can easily share the costs of the trip.

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