zou Terence 400

Ryde, a ride-sharing service provider operating in several large cities across the globe, has announced that its customers based in Singapore will now be able to pay for rides with bitcoin.

The company’s users will be able to convert bitcoin into its own ‘RydeCoin’ with zero transaction costs, and in a single payment, customers are able to top up a digital wallet named ‘RydePay’ to a total of SGD999 ($716.46) in bitcoin to pay for rides.

Fold - an app that enables micropayments through bitcoin – partnered with Uber in 2018 to enable users to pay for rides with bitcoin. However, Ryde is the first mobility operator to incorporate cryptocurrency into its own app by allowing the storage and use of bitcoin through the built-in digital wallet.

Terence Zou (pictured), founder and chief executive officer at Ryde Technologies, said: “The addition of cryptocurrency as a payment method was always going to be the natural next step as its transaction volume increased.”

According to Zou, the company began working on integrating with bitcoin last year, but when the pandemic began taking hold - and customers began opting to make cashless transactions due to concerns around infection – the company accelerated development to capitalise on the demand.

He added: “Singapore generally has a relatively tech-savvy population, and many Singaporeans have bitcoin. However, the use of bitcoin in Singapore is limited. We can purchase bitcoin at some ATMs and through crypto exchanges but not many merchants accept it.”

Ryde has also announced its long-term plan to turn its ‘RydePay’ digital wallet into a decentralised electronic ledger to open it up to more cryptocurrencies, and due to the steadily rising demand for ride-sharing services in cities, the company is aiming to facilitate the mass adoption of crypto-currency usage in Singapore.