Date
19 September 2017
Renrenkuaidi is said to have lured 1.5 million people into its freelance courier delivery team in China.
Renrenkuaidi is said to have lured 1.5 million people into its freelance courier delivery team in China.

Freelance courier app gains traction but doubts linger

Care to moonlight as a courier delivery person and earn some extra dollars? If the answer is yes and if you are in China, an online app can just help turn that wish into reality.

One-year old Renrenkuaidi is said to have already amassed 5 million users and built a freelance courier team of 1.5 million people, comprising citizens from all walks of life who aim to make their daily commute to the office or the market place more productive. Some treat this as a part-time job during the weekend.

Users can input the task they want to get done, like delivery of a cup of coffee, grocery shopping or sending a bunch of flowers to their loved ones on Valentine’s Day.

After picking up the request, the platform will assign the job to a bidder. Though anyone can apply, the company claims to have a vetting process to ensure proper service quality.

The concept is slowly catching on, but there are still many doubters.

For one, not all customers are willing to entrust their goods to strangers, especially if the order involves expensive items. Some industry insiders also do not approve of this novel express delivery model, alleging that Renrenkuaidi is basically a social networking site running a courier business without a proper license.

The lack of professional training and safety measures is another concern, which is important in the case of handling chemicals, inflammable goods or other dangerous items.

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RC

EJ Insight writer

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