I am not a native English speaker. I need some experience straight from the horse's mouth. Today I read an article with the word 'ride-hailing' (and I posted a quote below this paragraph). I got curious what ride-hailing is, so I opened my dictionary and tried to translate the word into my language. There have been no answers. There seem to be no equivalents in my language. I decided to add this word to a user-contributed dictionary. But, first, I need to understand the idea behind the word. This might help find a similar word in my language. So, I needed to understand what 'ride-hailing' was, and I googled it. I have found no reliable sources to explain the word. However, there was a big Wikipedia article on ... hail and ride! The other serious-looking results were mostly about ... 'ride-hailing' and there is even an online dictionary article. Suddenly, I got an idea, an insight. What if both words - hail and ride and ride-hailing are the same thing simply written in different words? In this case, if the connotations - the words - are the same, than ride-hailing means hail and ride and, so I can continue with my little research. THE QUESTION IS: are ride-hailing and hail and ride the same thing?

HERE IS THE QUOTE from TheGuardian with the original words:

"Uber tripled federal lobbying efforts in 2016, spending $1.36m – a whopping $890,000 more than in 2015. These efforts focused on modernizing existing laws, including pushing to allow federal employees to use ride-hailing services when traveling on official business."

So, here they are talking about taxis, and not buses!

But, then, Wiki talks buses:

In public transport in the United Kingdom and Australia, hail and ride is boarding or alighting a mode of public transport by signalling the driver or conductor that one wishes to board or alight, rather than the more conventional system of using a designated stop. Hail and ride is used primarily in bus transport.

Please, help me with your expertise. I understand you can speak different versions of English, so, it would be useful if you mentioned your part of the world.

P.S. The images in this article were borrowed from Business Standard and Transport for London. Also, I got puzzled by the Google image search results where ride-hailing was mainly about taxi, while hail and ride was about both buses and taxis.

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  • Have you tried translating "hail a ride"? Could you then create "ride-hailing" in your language? (In American English "hail a tax" or "hail a ride" is common; I'm not familiar with hailing a bus in AmE, but in fact we do it.)
    – Xanne
    Apr 15, 2017 at 3:48
  • ride-hailing means hailing a ride. It is only the hailing part of hand and ride. After hailing a ride (taxi, etc.) you might choose not to actually ride.
    – Drew
    Apr 15, 2017 at 4:02

1 Answer 1


Ride-hailing is the act of stopping a vehicle to ride it. Hail-and-ride is the system (scheme, set of practices and rules) in which buses can be / must be hailed by passengers who want to ride. Hail-and-ride is used to distinguish such systems within modes of transportation (buses) where it is not customary.

  • 1
    Hello, Paul Richter. Thank you for your contribution. However I could not understand your last sentence. Perhaps, there must be FROM instead of within? Could you paraphrase it to make it clear, please? Hail-and-ride is used to distinguish such systems within modes of transportation (buses) where it is not customary. Apr 17, 2017 at 2:15
  • Most bus systems have stops. But there are some which require hailing, and those are called hail-and-ride. Apr 17, 2017 at 8:28
  • I intended to say that a "mode of transportation" would refer to all bus systems, of which most have stops, but within that group, some would be hail-and-ride. But I can see where "from" would also work, if "modes... where it is not customary" refers to stop-based bus systems, from which we would distinguish hail-and-ride systems Apr 17, 2017 at 8:36

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