Masterclassing

Waze partners with SafeUP to help solo pedestrians feel safer this winter

David Murphy

Crowdsourced satnav app, Waze, is partnering with new community safety network, SafeUP, to help women, non-binary and genderqueer people feel safer when travelling alone this winter. 

As festive celebrations begin and daylight hours shorten, people feel increasingly vulnerable when walking alone. 63 per cent of women reported feeling ‘always’ or ‘often’ unsafe when walking by themselves (source: 2021 UK Census). And 49 per cent reported feeling unsafe walking alone after nightfall in a busy public place (source: YouGov). 

Waze and SafeUP’s new collaboration aims to support solo travellers in these moments, helping them feel safer and more confident on their journeys. Now, drivers can locate up to 129 ‘SafePlace’ shelters on Waze through branded location Pins that appear when drivers are near a registered location. Users can also set a SafePlace as their destination when searching for meeting places like ‘bars’ or ‘train stations’ or directly for SafeUP on Waze. 

‘SafePlaces’ are registered businesses that offer shelter for people feeling vulnerable walking alone. SafeUP partners with a range of companies, including hotels and hostels that are open 24/7, so the partnership with Waze will help users find a SafePlace at any time of day. Once parked, users can continue using SafeUP as normal when walking to a destination.  

“The onset of Christmas party season will see millions of revellers return to the streets to celebrate,” said Ulyana Guseva, Senior Industry Manager at Waze. “We know that women, non-binary, and gender-nonconforming individuals often put their lives on hold during the winter months in favour of staying home, and staying safe. 

“This partnership is designed to support both drivers and pedestrians travelling this winter, empowering them to take back control of their daily lives, and hopefully making them feel safer. SafePlaces will be easy to find on the Waze app through branded pins and sponsored destination searches, so whether you’re collecting a loved one or want to park near a SafePlace yourself, you can plan your route accordingly”. 

The partnership is running now until 28 February 2023, exclusively on Waze in the UK.