The French start-up, known primarily for its long-distance service, launched the BlaBlaLines service for shorter journeys in the greater Paris region of Ile-de-France on Thursday.
This news will no doubt be met with a sigh of relief by many Parisians, since the French capital is one of the worst cities in the world for traffic jams, according to recent figures from traffic navigation company TomTom.
The new service has already been trialed in the south west, between Toulouse and Montauban, as well as between Châlons-en-Champagne and Reims, since May.
“In these two small zones, we already have 20,000 subscribers,” president and founder of BlaBlaCar, Frédéric Mazzella, told Le Parisien.
In total, 2,000 return journeys were made each week on the app between Reims and Châlons-en-Champagne, on top of which 5,000 journeys were made between Toulouse and Montauban.
“Launching in the Ile-de-France seemed the next logical step,” Mazzella explained.
This is backed up by the fact that 43 percent of people living in the region travel to work by car every day, most of them alone, amounting to a total of 1.23 million journeys of over 10km each day.
On September 4th, Ile-de-France president Valérie Pécresse from the right-wing Les Republicains party, told France inter: “The solution of the futute is carpooling”. She added that there was a need for developing platforms and giving advantages to car-poolers, for example extra parking spaces and dedicated traffic lanes.
Downloading the application is free and it costs about €2 to travel 30km in the new short-distance car-pooling service.
This means a total cost of about €2,000 each year for a driver leaving his car at home.
The app can now be downloaded on both Android and iPhone.