Coronavirus: How is Bolt handling the new national restrictions?

3 Nov 2020

How is Bolt helping drivers during this time of financial hardship

As new lockdown restrictions are currently set until 2nd December in England, we wanted to clarify how Bolt services are affected. Learn more about the measures we as a company are taking to minimise the spread of the virus.

Are Bolt’s services affected?

Bolt’s ride-hailing service is still operational. We are working closely with local health authorities and TfL in case changes need to be made to the level of service that we can provide.

As of the 5th of November, the UK Government has advised the public to stay home and to only travel when it is an essential need such as:

  • Going to work or volunteering if tasks cannot be done from home
  • Essential errands
  • Fulfilling legal obligations, or to carry out activities related to buying, selling, letting or renting a property
  • Education or childcare
  • Visit people in your support bubble or provide childcare
  • Medical reasons, harm and compassionate visits
  • Visit a place of worship or attend specific events

We will continue our operations to provide transport for the reasons outlined above. The well-being and safety of our drivers and passengers is Bolt’s main priority and is frequently under review as we closely follow the UK government’s response.

What precautions are being taken by Bolt?

We have routinely sent our drivers & passengers information about the measures they could take to prevent the spread of the virus. We also shared a link to the NHS coronavirus webpage which lists preventative measures such as:

  1. Staying at home if you feel unwell.
  2. Washing your hands regularly and using hand sanitiser.
  3. Covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then disposing of the used tissue immediately.
  4. Avoiding close contact with anyone who is unwell.
  5. Downloading the NHS Test & Trace app

For drivers, the Bolt Hub is now closed until further notice as an added safety measure. Driver support, however, is still fully operational online.

We are also closely monitoring feedback from drivers and passengers who report witnessing COVID-19 symptoms during a trip. We are in conversation with the relevant public health authorities and are ready to temporarily suspend the accounts of any drivers or riders who we have good reason to suspect present a health risk to others. Bolt’s customer support team has developed processes to address COVID-19 queries as a priority.

Mandatory face coverings

The following safety measures are being done by Bolt to minimise the spread of Covid-19:

  • Face coverings: All drivers and passengers will be required to wear face coverings when travelling with Bolt. Anyone reported for not wearing a face mask (passenger or driver) will result in an internal investigation which will be relayed to TfL. This is a legal requirement with exceptions made for those that have a valid medical exemption.
  • Front seats: The use of front seats for passengers is temporarily disabled until further notice. This will be reflected in the seating capacity shown in the rider app for each category. A family of 4 passengers should be suggested to request an XL.
  • Cancellation fees: Cancellation fees will be waived if a passenger cancels a trip due to a driver not wearing a face mask.

A face covering can be as simple as a scarf or bandana that ties behind your head. Please follow the latest government guidance for more information.

In addition to the guidance given by TfL, we have posted Bolt guidelines for drivers and for passengers on our support pages.

Bolt Protect

In September we created a new ride-type specifically designed to address Covid-19 concerns – Bolt Protect. All Bolt Protect cars are equipped with a TfL-approved partition screen to physically separate you from your driver. We added this special ride-type to help alleviate safety concerns and protect vulnerable passengers, who may feel less inclined to take other forms of transport at this current time. Bolt Protect is available as another form of transport designed to get you from A to B, safely.

Where can I get up-to-date information about Coronavirus?

Regularly check for updates from the Department of Health & Social Care and the NHS. Both of these resources will provide you with the most up-to-date information about the UK Government’s response and the latest precautionary measures.

Stay safe.

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