First Hawaii-Based Rideshare Company Hits The Road | News, Sports, Jobs
Cecil Morton was sitting down for a meal in Kahului with his family earlier this year when he told them about his idea for a Hawaii-based rideshare business.
“I said, ‘This is what I want to do, guys. What do you think I should name him? ‘ “ Morton remembers.
Her daughter, Danielle Morton, immediately said “holoholo”, meaning “Let’s go on a cruise.”
“I just fell in love with the name” said Cecil Morton, who has worked in the transportation industry in Hawaii for 20 years as the owner of SpeediShuttle. “And because we’re all about the community as well as welcoming visitors, I want them to like to use a local brand and support the community in that way, because there is, of course, a movement these days. here to support the locals. “
Holoholo is now the only local Hawaii-based rideshare company in the state. The company began looking for drivers in April and officially launched its services on May 24 in Maui, Lanai, Oahu, Island of Hawaii, and Kauai. Cecil Morton is the CEO and Danielle Morton, who coined the company name, now helps oversee the Maui Chapter.
Car transportation service operates across the island, including Kapalua, Hana, Upcountry, Kihei, Lahaina, and other locations, and also offers rides to and from Kahului and Kapalua airports.
Holoholo includes a community of drivers and vehicles that drivers can request from their smartphones, view potential costs in advance, and pay online, helping drivers access “Reliable and safe transport”.
“Safety is also very important to us” said Cecil Morton. “Women as drivers and as bikers, we want them to feel comfortable. We’ve built the technology to promote safety, and again we’re just trying to create a team of ohana drivers who really understand what SpeediShuttle has stood for over the years, that is, it’s easy. to do business with us and be exceptional service, sprinkled with ho’okipa.
Affordable transportation options are in high demand on Maui with tourist numbers on the rise and many car rental companies with limited inventory after shipping vehicles off the island during the pandemic.
Similar to taxis, car rentals, Uber and Lyft, Morton said the holholo is just another transportation option, except it’s cheaper and on a mission to connect communities with businesses. Hawaiian locals, promote island culture and offer HoloGreen (eco-friendly vehicle) services.
Taking on established rideshare companies like Uber has its challenges, but Morton said “They are overwhelmed by our motivation and our mission to succeed”.
There has already been a growing demand for the holoholo among drivers and riders since the launch two weeks ago. The company did not disclose the number of drivers in Maui and Lanai.
“We are building our business one driver and one customer at the same time” he said. “I know from our 20 years of experience on four islands – Lanai is new to us – but Maui needs a good list of drivers, a big list, in order to meet the demands, which before the pandemic, there were 200,000 visitors a month. “
Amid the pandemic, companies still face challenges in trying to get their employees back to work, but “We have an excellent team that we have put together for holoholo”, he said.
He added that he wanted to offer a “A great opportunity for drivers to earn a living. “
A South Maui resident who relies on carpooling as her main source of income is already hoping to make Holholo her full-time job. Corinna Payne has been a driver for Lyft and Uber for three years, but seeks to support and work for local businesses.
“It’s great to be able to work for a local company because I feel like I’m going to get more support from them as well. “ she said by phone Wednesday morning. “Uber and Lyft are so big that you don’t really get a chance to talk to anyone if you have a problem – you’re just a small piece of the map of the world. Working for a local company is going to keep the money locally, and that just makes it safer for everyone because you will actually be working with real people.
Customer service will be “It’s so much better for pilots and pilots and I think people are going to really appreciate it”, she added.
Although the majority of customers are currently residents, she anticipates that more visitors will start using holoholo once the company becomes better known in the industry.
“It’s a slow start, you know, not many people know them yet, but I’m glad they’re busy” said Payne. “I have the sticker in my car now, so people in my car ask me questions and I educate people about the holholo, which is pretty cool.”
On the side, Payne runs an online store called Da Maui Drift, selling sea-inspired artwork from reused, recycled and reused materials and items like driftwood and seashells found on the beach.
Holoholo staff “Have a great attitude and it’s always easier to work for someone from the area, and I always try to support the local too,” said Payne. “I think a lot of people have that mindset.”
Users can request rides and check prices online at rideholoholo.com/book-online or through the holoholo mobility app.
* Dakota Grossman can be contacted at [email protected]