Seniors and Ride Share Services

Transportation challenges can be one of the biggest barriers to seniors engaging in social opportunities, following up with medical appointments, or running important errands. With about only 20% of adults over the age of 65 being licensed drivers, it is no wonder why seniors and their family caregivers are scrambling to find new ways to rise to the challenge of getting them from here to there. 

While many large and small cities offer public transportation and even senior-specific transportation options, it can still be difficult to manage those schedules. For some family members, looking to rideshare services to fill in the gap can be the next best choice.

But are rideshare services safe and effective for older adults? Here are a few things to keep in mind before you download the app on your loved one’s phone.

Access to Transportation Supports Independence

Losing a driver’s license can be devastating for an older adult, as it can quickly increase dependence on others. Rideshare services can offer quick access to transportation for seniors, supporting independence and feelings of self-esteem. 

Technology Can Be a Barrier to Use

If your loved one is not tech-savvy, they may find it difficult to navigate rideshare apps like Uber or Lyft on their own. This app-based technology can be a barrier to using rideshare services, even if a family caregiver books the ride ahead of time on behalf of the senior. It can be tricky to understand how to safely find the correct car and begin the ride.

Safety Still Needs Some Work

Both Uber and Lyft have come a long way in the past 5 years developing safety measures and protocols to protect both drivers and passengers. However, most of the safety precautions are aimed at able-bodied and cognitively sound passengers. Older adults are still a vulnerable population for rideshare services, if a family member or professional caregiver does not accompany them.

How CaringGivers Can Offer Peace of Mind

At CaringGivers, we love that seniors and their family members have access to different types of transportation solutions. These diverse solutions, including rideshare, can help meet the needs, preferences, and budgets of older adults in our community.

However, we strongly encourage family members and seniors to pair our services with their rideshare experience. Our caregivers are there to provide support by coordinating rideshare services so that the senior can have plenty of time to arrive at their appointment. Our team is there to ensure safe transfers in and out of the vehicle, which rideshare drivers are simply not equipped to do.

In addition to coordinating rideshare services and transferring, CaringGiver caregivers are there to be in the vehicle with the senior, adding engagement and ensuring peace of mind that they are safe. Once at the destination, our caregiver will facilitate a safe transfer and then accompany the senior to their appointment.

The Bottom Line

Rideshare services are excellent and can be quite beneficial for both seniors and their family caregivers. However, these services should be paired with the oversight of an experienced CaringGivers caregiver in order to ensure safety, peace of mind, and positive engagement.

Ready to learn more about our supportive services? Contact us to schedule a consultation.

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