A new mode of getting around town is bound to take the city by storm. The recently introduced Tuk-Tuber initiative is a cool and simultaneously affordable means of travel, whether for purposes of pleasure, play or purely practical transport arrangement. It is almost as if The Transporter has come to Polokwane… and gotten himself hooked up with an outlandish mobile.
There was absolutely no declining the opportunity to hop on board local entrepreneur Niel Gerritsen’s VIP Tuk-Tuber for a complimentary ride through town to the familiar sounds of Daddy Cool this week. Up Marshall Street past the road works after crossing the main street, right at the convenient store on the corner of Dorp Street and round and about iconic Peter Mokaba Stadium.
Before taking off Gerritsen explained that his concept was introduced little over a fortnight ago. It is a business concern born from a conundrum which he experienced upon dropping off his car at the dealers one morning when not having immediate alternative transport to reaching a client in time and, in another instance, didn’t have anyone to fetch him while his vehicle was at the car wash.
Tuk-Tuber serves as a fun opportunity for seeing Polokwane on a Sunday afternoon cruise through a part of the city accompanied by family or friends or an option to the usual travel crisis, be it collecting kids for extra-mural activities or an elderly parent for a visit or even having someone running an errand like collecting a parcel for drop-off. Indeed no order seemed too big or too small for this transporter, Gerritsen guaranteed. Thus far the most varied requests for the service include enquiries about dropping off a matric couple at their farewell and delivering Santa Claus with gifts at a party, it was learnt.
Gerritsen explained that the service got charged per ride and was not based on the number of individuals sharing the journey.
The vehicle got booked in advance for occupation by up to six passengers via WhatsApp at R35 for the first 10 km of the journey and an additional R10 per kilometre thereafter all within a 40 km radius of town, he elaborated. Confirmation of the service is simultaneously received by WhatsApp text response.
Upon commencement of the journey the progress thereof can be monitored via a link sent to a passenger’s phone for the benefit of a concerned party having to track the ride for security purposes. What adds to the appeal is that passengers get to choose their own drop-off destinations and had the luxury of tuning into the on-board sound system through Bluetooth from their smartphones.
Various payment options are available and can be done in advance through SnapScan or via electronic transfer, by card machine as well as cash on board.
Demand for the service occurs on a first come, first served basis and if not immediately available clients would have to settle for a delay in pick-up or drop-off times, Gerritsen warned.
The service has already been expanded to afford parties or individuals to take a Sunday afternoon ride along a pre-identified route through the city or its suburbs at a cost of R160 per half-hour booking.
According to Gerritsen the vehicle, that can reach a maximum speed of 60 km per hour, remains under 24-hour security surveillance and is equipped with a panic button for armed response to be deployed.
So now there’s no for flying off to Asia to secure a ride in an outlandish tuk-tuk mobile anymore.
Connect with Tuk-Tuber to book via WhatsApp on 060 829 5749 and obtain more details on the Tuk-Tuber facebook page.
Story and photos: YOLANDE NEL