CHULA VISTA, Calif. (KGTV) - A new company in the South Bay is helping stressed out parents make back to school season less of a hassle.
"Kiddie Commute," founded by SDSU grads Shan Cureton and Shaunie Lopez, offers rides for kids to and from places like school, sports practices and other extra-curricular activities.
"We're offering peace of mind," says Cureton, who found a need for the business while taking classes at SDSU and worrying about her children's ability to get to their events.
"I ran out of favors," says Cureton. "My kids were taking Ubers and Lyfts and I couldn't find anybody to pick them up and I was just a nervous wreck."
That led her to start Kiddie Commute.
Right now, the company has just five drivers and covers parts of the South Bay. Lopez and Cureton hope to launch an app in September and hire more drivers to expand the business all across San Diego County.
"We've gotten a lot of interest from the North County," says Cureton. "But right now we don't have enough drivers to cover it."
Drivers looking for a job go through full Department of Justice background checks. They also take 11 part drug screenings before being hired, and are subject to random drug and alcohol tests. The last test before getting a job is a handful of in person interviews to make sure the driver is comfortable around kids and has the right personality to be a driver.
"We want our drivers to be personable and we want the parents to be comfortable with them as well," says Lopez.
Unlike Uber or Lyft, which offer on-demand rides and don't allow kids to ride alone, Kiddie Commute is subscription based, allowing parents to set a schedule weeks in advance. Last minute rides must be booked at least 48 hours in advance. They also try to keep the same driver with the same kids to increase familiarity.
A single ride costs $12 for 0-3 miles. It's $1 per mile after that. But with some of the weekly and monthly subscriptions, costs come down. A week of back and forth rides from 0-3 miles is $60 for five days and $0.65 per mile after that.
Cureton says they're working with schools and day cares to get clearance to check kids in and out, but that they want to make sure they're following the rules.
"More than anything, we want to give parents some peace of mind," says Lopez.
Full information about their plans and prices is on their website, kiddiecommute.com. They also take reservations over the phone at 619-254-6500.