Careem partners with Visa to provide its captains with real-time access to their earnings

Careem is partnering with Visa to provide different types of financial payment services to its captains, the two companies announced today. The services aim to resolve different challenges (for captains) associated with real-time access to funds, cash conversion, and remittances.

The services, for now, are being launched in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, and Pakistan. The two companies haven’t provided a timeline for the launch. Careem and Visa, however, said, that they have plans to roll the services out across the rest of the region where Careem operates by partnering with banks and regulators.

Careem captains in the five countries that are getting the services will be issued with Visa card credentials, enabling them to access different payment solutions including real-time payment directly to eligible cards, accounts, and wallets, and low-cost remittance solutions to transfer money to bank accounts and Visa cards worldwide.

What this essentially means is that the Careem captains will be able to access their daily trip earnings in real-time. It would be useful for those captains who receive a large number of rides with card (or digital) payments instead of cash. The captains previously used to receive their earnings every few days (in some cases up to two weeks) by Careem.

The captains in some of Careem’s markets including Egypt and Pakistan prefer cash rides over those that are paid by cards or Careem Pay but with the option of being able to access their earnings instantly (by transferring them to their bank accounts or wallets), this should not be a concern for them any longer.

In the United Arab Emirates & Saudi, a very large number of Careem captains are expatriates from different parts of the world (mainly South Asia). The partnership will now allow them (and even those in Egypt, Jordan & Pakistan) to be able to use “low-cost remittance solutions” within Careem’s app to make fund transfers to bank accounts and Visa cards worldwide.

Junaid Iqbal, the Managing Director of Careem Pay, said: “The only way digital payments truly make a difference is when both sides of the market benefit. Through this partnership with Visa, Careem will be paying captains in real-time, bringing them into the digital marketplace and removing the need for cash.

Digital payments are the backbone of Careem’s Super App, giving us immense opportunities to simplify the lives of even more people across the region. The partnership with Visa will not only solve cash flow constraints but will also provide many new use cases to improve the everyday lives of Careem customers.”

Marcello Baricordi, Visa’s General Manager for MENA, commented, “Societies around the world have been challenged by the coronavirus outbreak, and many individuals and businesses continue to experience severe hardship, especially the underbanked who are more vulnerable. As a company, Visa is working hard, along with our partners including fintechs, Super Apps and Digital Banks, to support, inform and protect our societies.”

“We’re seeing how COVID-19 has radically changed how we spend, send and use money. Enabling secure, immediate movement of money for gig economy workers like Careem captains is especially vital as we support economic recovery efforts,” he added.

Zubair Naeem Paracha
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