Ola has launched a contactless parcel delivery service in Australia to send goods and alcohol across cities

Ola has launched a parcel delivery service. (Photo by Hemant Mishra/Mint via Getty Images)

Rideshare company Ola has introduced a contactless delivery service in Australia.

The new service lets users transport goods, alcohol and parcels to and from friends and family members who are in isolation or are practising social distancing. Ola is also working with businesses to help them transport goods to their own customers.

On its website, Ola said it is doing parcel delivery “to ensure the financial viability” of drivers currently using the Ola Australia and New Zealand platform.

“Our local team is working hard to ensure we’re using the capabilities of the Ola tech platform and our community of drivers, to help Australians in the ways they really need,” Ola Australia and New Zealand managing director Simon Smith said in a statement.

“Offering parcel delivery will support our drivers to maintain an income in a critical time and help people and communities continue to function in a safe, efficient way.”

Only drivers who are vetted by Ola ANZ are eligible to do delivery. All registered drivers who are approved have to ensure minimal contact with the packages, deliver alcohol in line with responsible service of alcohol guidelines and use appropriate hygiene and food handling practices.

When it comes to pick-ups, drivers are encouraged to stay in their vehicles while the customer places the goods in their boot. And when delivering, drivers will open the boot for the recipient to retrieve.

Ola’s move comes after taxi company 13cabs launched its delivery service 13things in March. The taxi provider aimed to redeploy some of its 40,000 drivers to deliver parcels, with customers and businesses able to order delivery through the app, by calling the company’s taxi line or via the website.

“We hope to give our Australian community piece of mind that they’ll be able to access all the things, like medicines and groceries, that they require while adjusting to these unusual circumstances,” 13cabs chief operating officer Steven Overell said during the launch of 13 things.

READ MORE:

13cabs is launching a new delivery service, turning cabbies into delivery drivers during the coronavirus crisis

Apps like Menulog are reporting a surge in restaurants signing up for delivery – as a petition circulates demanding platform fees be slashed

Demand for booze delivery has risen sharply in Australia, as the coronavirus forces people indoors

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