- Uber Technologies has used its open-access model for facilitating transit to revolutionize how the world’s citizens move around, operating its ride-sharing solutions in 67 countries
- The company recently introduced a pricing alternative that allows riders to pay for multiple stops at a single, hourly rate in select metropolitan cities beginning June 2
- The hourly rate replaces a model in which riders had to select new service after arriving at each destination, complicating the plans of those customers who needed to complete essential errands
- The new option is a timely response to the disruption of public transportation by forces including the deadly coronavirus pandemic, as well as the upheaval during rioting and social unrest in response to recent events within the United States
Pioneering transportation facilitator Uber Technologies Inc. (NYSE: UBER) is developing a new errand-running option for riders that shows the company’s responsiveness to customer needs at a time when numerous market disruption forces are challenging businesses’ efforts to keep operations in motion.
Uber’s announcement that it will allow riders to select a single $50 per hour rate with multiple stops in select cities (http://nnw.fm/kzTg0) provides an alternative for public transportation customers who’ve found their routines disrupted by daunting forces such as the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic and recent rioting in many metropolitan cities.
“At Uber, we are always thinking about how we can make people’s lives easier by developing products that solve new challenges,” the company stated in a recent news release about family-centric changes to its meal delivery services (http://nnw.fm/tb0Ic).
Uber has allowed riders to request multiple destinations in one trip since 2017 but it was previously necessary for them to re-request a new trip after visiting each location if they wanted to run errands to multiple stops, according to a report on the decision in The Verge (http://nnw.fm/Pu9Mw).
The single fee for multiple stops service rolled out June 2 in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Miami, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Seattle, Tacoma, Tampa Bay and Washington, D.C. It matches the riders with a driver who has a more spacious and newer model of vehicle that is eligible for Uber Comfort, according to the company.
Uber has introduced several new initiatives during recent weeks to support its own drivers as well as members of the general public attempting to continue performing essential tasks during the pandemic, which has seen a highly infectious and often deadly or debilitating virus spread throughout populations around the globe since the beginning of the year (http://nnw.fm/Cb2Z2).
The company provided masks, hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies for its drivers, financial support for drivers who become sick, and information on navigating the varied regulations for public relief under the different governments where Uber’s drivers operate (http://nnw.fm/SwNx3). Riders are also required to wear masks, and drivers limit the number of passengers allowed per vehicle.
Recent unrest as a result of widespread anger over a black man’s death while in police custody led to the shutdown of public transportation in many of the United States’ metro areas, further disrupting transit (http://nnw.fm/9Ilii) while directing ridership to Uber drivers providing essential services (http://nnw.fm/T4soS).
Uber’s director of rider operations, Niraj Patel, said the new hourly multi-stop rate is “an additional earnings opportunity for drivers” in the company’s announcement, noting the customer will be asked to select how long the trip will last before confirming the ride and will end up paying for the time selected even if the trip actually takes less time.
Customers will also be charged a per-minute rate if their trips go over the time limit, or a per-mile rate for trips that go over the mileage limit. The company first tested the strategy in countries like Australia, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East, and plans to extend it to additional cities in the United States during the coming weeks as it determines the response from riders.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.Uber.com
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