You may or may not have heard of Uber before. Uber was founded in 2009 in San Francisco and the aim of the company was to provide an on demand private driver service, available to the customer at a swipe of the smartphone. Since launch the mobile app Uber has been a worldwide success and now operates in over 50 countries. Since 2012 they have been operating in the UK, firstly in London but now in Leeds and Manchester too. Let me give you the low down, and sort you out with your first ride free, perfect for this weekend.
So how does it work?
It’s all pretty simple. Just download the app on your Smartphone, register and you’re good to go! I’ve included direct links below for you if you’re on your phone. Firstly select the service you’d like, in London there are 5 tiers to choose from, ranging from a Toyota Prius, to a Mercedes S Class.Then simply plug in where you’d like to go, and the app will quote you, if you’re happy with the fare estimate, simply confirm and your driver will be enroute to pick you up. The real beauty of this service is it’s cashless, so once you get in your car you won’t have to worry about rummaging for coins or plastic, you can just get out your Mercedes at your final destination as if it were your own driver dropping you off! A receipt will be emailed to your registered email shortly after you arrive.
What car will I get?
So there are 5 different services to choose from. Whilst there are variations in other countries, below are the cars you’ll be able to ride within the UK:
- Uber X – Often 30% – 50% cheaper than a black cab
- Uber XL – Large people carriers, useful for large groups
- UberExec – Mid to high end luxury saloon cars, like the BMW 5 Series
- UberLux – Top end 100k plus cars, like the Mercedes S Class above
There is also UberTaxi, which is Uber’s answer to the dispute with the majority of London cabbies. Cab drivers are not happy one bit about this new service, as it’s a game changer, and has meant that the black cab no longer holds the monopoly. Uber Taxi, whilst not fully operational on the times I’ve used Uber in London, will grant you use of select London Cabs (partnered with Uber) which will drive you about on the same principle as their other cars.
My personal experience?
In one word, fantastic. I’ve used the app in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Bangkok and London, and each time i’ve been very impressed with the service i’ve received. The real reason for it’s success is convenience. For example, say you’ve just got out of a concert in West End, everyone is flagging down taxi’s and the nearest taxi rank has at least a 15minute queue. Just order an Uber as you make your way out and it could be waiting outside for you by the time you’re out. Saving you time, effort and more often than not, it’s a lot cheaper than a black cab! If you’re interested I’ve had the following cars:
- UberLux: Audi A8, BMW 7 Series, Mercedes S Class, Lexus LS (Dubai)
- UberExec: Mercedes E Class, Toyota Camry (Dubai)
- UberX: Toyota Prius
Have £20 free from me
Upon registration enter the code: MCV for £20 off your first ride. For a journey of about 15-20mins this should allow you a totally free journey in a Mercedes S Class (Uber Lux). Don’t say I don’t give you anything!
Already got Uber?
No problem! Just like and send a message on the TrekTrendy Facebook and i’ll give you the lowdown on how to get some free Uber rides!
And the competition?
There have been several competitors starting to emerge over the past 18 months. I’ll be showing you how to get free rides on these services next week, so like the TrekTrendy Facebook page or check back here next week.
So I thought I’d try out how far you can test their quote tool. I’d love to see the drivers expression if you’d requested this journey….
Disclaimer: Some images used courtesy of Uber.com