The family schedule is probably one of the biggest parenting challenges. Between coordinating the calendars for work, school and the kids' activities, figuring out how to get your kids from point A to point B is a task in and of itself.
While carpooling is an option, let's be real, that means coordinating your family's busy schedule with another family's busy schedule. Psh, yeah right. Aside from getting a full-time nanny or asking other family members, your options are pretty slim. And more often than not, you'll be the one driving your kids around every weeknight. Shoutout to all the chauffeur moms and dads whose whole life seems to exist in the car—we see you hustling to make sure your kids aren't late to their various classes and practices.
Luckily, parents in Denver, Colorado are getting a big break with HopSkipDrive, a kid-focused ride-sharing service that takes your kids where they need to go while under the care of certified caredrivers. The company, which was started by three California moms back in 2014 and dubbed an Uber-for-kids, has recently expanded to Denver—their first city outside of California.
Ride-sharing apps like Uber and Lyft have become very popular in recent years, but HopSkipDrive is the first to allow kids to ride without being accompanied by a guardian or family member. They can do this because unlike Uber and Lyft, their screening process for drivers is much more rigorous. In order to work as one of their caredrivers, applicants must have at least 5 years of caregiving experience and pass a 15-point certification process. This way, parents no longer have to race home from work to pickup their kid and can rest easy knowing they're being driven safely to their various activities while under the care of trusted childcare professionals.
“It’s hard when we’re single moms and we have to be at work but our kids have to be in certain places,” said Denver mom Joanna Aguilera to the Denver Post. “And it’s great they have child care experience.”
On top of that, folks at their service centre follow each ride in real time, and parents can also follow along using the company's app, which is available for Android and iOS. The service is available starting at $6 per family using the carpool option, and can shuttle kids ages six and up (heads up, they're not just for kids—HopSkipDrive is also great for senior citizens who may need more care and attention than an Uber driver can provide). However, unlike most ride-sharing apps, rides cannot be called on demand. Instead, they must be scheduled at least eight hours in advance or by 7pm the night before.
We think this is a great idea and possibly a total game-changer for busy parents. Not having to worry about driving the kids around for hours every night would free up more after-work time to make dinner, catch up on laundry or even finally have that date night you've been talking about for weeks. Here's hoping the service—or at least something similar to it—makes its way north of the border sometime in the future. If it does, would you try it?