Ibibo-owned bus booking platform redBus will now allow users to hire buses, mini-buses, cars etc., on its platform. The ‘Bus Hiring‘ service is currently available in Bangalore, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi and Ahmedabad, with other cities expected to be added soon.

This is an interesting new addition from redBus which has traditionally focused on shared bus bookings. With this development, the company will compete with the likes of Ola and Uber that offer intercity cab services. redBus goes a step further, and in addition to cars, lets users hire a range of vehicles (drivers included) over the service, including luxury buses, regular buses, mini buses and tempos.

For booking, users first need to provide details of the trip, including if within the city, or out station, and the dates and times they need the vehicle for. Users also need to provide the number of travellers, and other details like AC or non-AC vehicle, post which the company directly contacts customers within 2 hours, with relevant vehicle options for hiring.

redBus mentions that users will be able to choose vehicles and look at images before making a choice. However, we couldn’t find listing on the website, rather the company likely provides these details over email, once a user requests a hire. Payments vary based on operator to operator and can be done online. Users are required to pay 50% of the fees upfront, with the rest paid after the trip.

Other than adding new features, redBus has been focusing on its international expansion as well. In July, the company had acquired a majority stake in Peru-based bus ticketing platform Busportal.pe for an undisclosed amount, foraying into the South American market in countries such as Peru, Chile and Colombia. The company had also started international operations in Singapore and Malaysia, earlier last year.

Image source: Flickr user dhendrix73 under CC BY-ND 2.0