Using Uber/Bolt in Accra, What You Should Know & Expect

Frank Osei Nyarko
By Frank Osei Nyarko - NyarkoWiz 9 Min Read


If you’re planning a trip to Accra, Ghana, and wondering about the availability and usage of ride-hailing apps like Uber, you’ve come to the right place.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore everything you need to know about using Uber and other similar apps in Accra.

From popular apps and driver preferences to tips and tricks for a smooth ride, we’ve got you covered.

When it comes to getting around Accra, Uber is the most popular and widely used ride-hailing app in Ghana. However, it’s not the only option available. Bolt and Yango are also popular alternatives to Uber in Accra. While Uber and Bolt operate similarly, Yango offers a unique experience with its user-friendly interface and competitive pricing.

1.1 Uber in Accra

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Uber has gained significant popularity in Accra due to its reliability and extensive coverage. With just a few taps on your smartphone, you can easily book an Uber ride to your desired destination in Accra.

The average waiting time for an Uber in Accra is around 3-5 minutes, making it a convenient and efficient mode of transportation.

1.2 Bolt in Accra

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Bolt, formerly known as Taxify, is another popular ride-hailing app in Accra. It operates similarly to Uber and offers competitive pricing.

Bolt drivers are known for their promptness and professionalism. Depending on your location, you may find that Bolt rides tend to arrive slightly faster compared to Uber.

1.3 Yango in Accra

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Yango, a ride-hailing app powered by Yandex, is gaining traction in Accra. It offers a seamless booking experience and competitive pricing.

Yango drivers are known for their friendliness and punctuality. If you’re looking for an alternative to Uber and Bolt, Yango could be a great option to consider.

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2. Driver Practices and Preferences

To ensure a smooth and hassle-free ride, it’s important to be aware of certain driver practices and preferences in Accra. Understanding these nuances can help you have a better experience when using ride-hailing apps.

2.1 Air Conditioning

Ghana is known for its hot and humid climate, and you might expect ride-hailing drivers to have their air conditioning (AC) turned on. However, it’s important to note that most drivers in Accra do not regularly use the AC during rides. Some drivers may claim that their AC is broken or cite high fuel prices as reasons for not using it. To stay comfortable during your ride, it’s advisable to carry a rechargeable fan or other personal cooling devices.

2.2 Payment Preferences

While ride-hailing apps offer cashless payment options, it’s worth noting that most drivers in Accra prefer cash payments. Drivers only see the payment method after they pick you up and start the trip. If you choose to pay by card, some drivers may express their preference for cash or even threaten to cancel the trip. To avoid any inconvenience, it’s recommended to inform the driver in advance if you’ll be paying by card. In case you don’t have cash on hand, you can still book a cash ride and request the driver to stop at an ATM or bank along the way.

2.3 Vehicle Types

In Accra, the majority of Uber and other ride-hailing cars are small vehicles, commonly known as Daewoo Matis. These compact cars are the most prevalent option for general Uber rides in the city. However, if you prefer a larger or more comfortable car, you can consider booking an Uber Comfort or a higher-tier service.

3. Communication and Etiquette

Effective communication and understanding local etiquette can enhance your ride-hailing experience in Accra. Here are some important points to keep in mind:

3.1 Destination Confirmation

In Accra, ride-hailing drivers can only see your destination after they pick you up and start the trip. It’s not uncommon for drivers to ask you about your destination once you’re already in the car. While this may seem repetitive or time-consuming, it’s a safety measure implemented by the ride-hailing companies. To avoid any confusion or wasted time, drivers may contact you via call or message to confirm your destination before picking you up. It’s recommended to provide accurate information to ensure a smooth journey.

3.2 Polite Communications

During your interaction with the drivers, you may come across instances where they call or message you to inform you of their arrival. These messages often contain phrases like “Please, I am on my way.” While it may seem unnecessary or amusing, it’s a common practice for drivers to maintain a polite and professional tone when communicating with passengers.

3.3 Directions and Navigation

Some drivers in Accra may ask for directions, especially when picking you up from a less familiar or remote location. While this can be frustrating or inconvenient, it’s important to remain patient and provide clear instructions. If you’re uncomfortable giving directions, you can politely request the driver to rely on navigation apps like Google Maps or Waze. Remember, safety should always be a priority, so trust your instincts and take the necessary precautions.

4. Tips for a Smooth Ride

To make the most of your ride-hailing experience in Accra, here are some additional tips to consider:

4.1 Plan Ahead

When using ride-hailing apps, it’s always a good idea to plan your trips in advance. Check the estimated fares and compare them across different apps to ensure you’re getting the best deal. Additionally, factor in the potential traffic conditions and plan your trips accordingly.

4.2 Rating System

After completing your ride, don’t forget to rate your driver and provide feedback through the ride-hailing app. This helps maintain a high standard of service and allows drivers to improve their skills based on customer feedback.

4.3 Safety Precautions

While ride-hailing services offer a convenient mode of transportation, it’s essential to prioritize your safety. Always verify the driver’s details, such as their name and license plate, before getting into the car. Share your trip details with a trusted friend or family member and keep them updated on your journey. If you feel uncomfortable or unsafe during the ride, don’t hesitate to contact the ride-hailing company or local authorities.

Conclusion

Using Uber and other ride-hailing apps in Accra, Ghana, can simplify your transportation experience during your visit. By familiarizing yourself with popular apps, understanding driver preferences, and following proper communication etiquette, you can ensure a smooth and enjoyable ride. Remember to plan ahead, prioritize safety, and provide feedback to help maintain a reliable and efficient ride-hailing service in Accra.

For more information about visiting Ghana, check out our comprehensive guide on things to know before visiting Ghana. If you’re looking for a checklist of essential items to pack for your trip to Ghana, we’ve got you covered there too.

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