Instant bookings are bookings scheduled for "now". They are best suited for instant delivery operations, where customer requests must be processed without delay.
Configuring Instant bookings
Instant booking settings are part of Ops configurations (Settings → Ops configuration). Because an Ops configuration is attached to a Service area, you can enable Instant bookings in some areas while keeping them disabled in others.
Pickable booking vs. Instant booking requests
There are two ways to notify eligible drivers about new Instant bookings: either notify drivers individually one-by-one or show a list of all available Instant bookings to all drivers at the same time. These two ways are known by different feature names. The former is referred to as Instant booking requests, and the latter is called Pickable bookings.
By default, Pickable bookings are enabled for each new tenant on MotionTools. If you'd like to switch to Instant booking requests, contact our Customer Success team.
The pickable booking feature allows all eligible drivers to see all instant booking requests simultaneously. Any driver can choose to start any booking from the list. Pickable bookings are designed for instant-delivery operations in mind when all drivers are concentrated in one place, such as a hub or dark store, and the time between creating a booking and starting it must be reduced to a minimum.
A driver is eligible for a Pickable booking if they are in the Service area of the booking, are not busy with other bookings, and are online with matching capabilities.
Matching capabilities mean a driver has an exact capability of the request or better. For example, if a customer requests a small truck, the request will also be sent to a driver of a large truck.
On the dashboard
When a matching engine makes a booking visible to all eligible drivers, the booking status changes to Pickable. Once a driver starts the booking, its status changes to En Route.
When a new Instant booking becomes available for picking, all eligible drivers receive a push notification. If a driver's app is open, the list of bookings will be immediately refreshed.
Sorting preferences and direction: the list of Pickable bookings can be sorted by scheduled time or by the distance between the current driver location and the first stop of the booking. By default, bookings are sorted by scheduled time in ascending order, i.e., newly created bookings are added to the bottom of the list.
If bookings are sorted by distance, the Driver app will display the distance for each booking and a pin on the map for the first stop of the first booking in the list.
Please contact our Customer Success team if you’d like to change sorting preferences or direction.
Instant booking requests
Instant booking requests are designed for taxi-like operations. When an Instant booking is created, the matching engine finds the closest eligible driver and sends them a request, which they can accept or decline. If the request is declined or not accepted within a certain amount of time, the matching engine sends the request to the next closest driver. This process continues until all eligible drivers have seen the request on their phones or until one of the drivers accepts the request. Instant booking requests don’t expire.
A driver is eligible for an Instant booking request if they are in the Service area, within the search radius around the first stop of the booking, are not busy with other bookings, and are online with matching capabilities.
On the dashboard
When a matching engine starts searching for eligible drivers for the booking, the booking status changes to Looking for drivers. Once a driver is found, the status changes to Assigning, indicating that we are waiting for a driver to accept or reject the request. After a driver accepts the request, the booking status changes to En Route.
Booking requests in the driver app
Instant booking requests are time-sensitive, and to ensure that a driver sees the request, the Driver app continuously plays sound and vibrates. The app also displays the instant booking request screen, where the driver can check request details such as booking addresses, number of stops, and requested capabilities.
Most of the Instant booking request settings are configurable per tenant through us. Please contact our Customer Success team if you’d like to change any of the following parameters:
- Search radius: the maximum distance from the first stop of a booking that the matching engine considers for driver requests. The default value is 30 km.
- Distribution wait time: the time the matching engine waits before sending a request to the next-closest driver. The default value is 30 seconds.
Settings configurable per Service via the Dashboard:
- Show destination: allows drivers to see the destination location before accepting a booking request. Enabled by default.