Uber, the app-driven ride-sharing company, will be making its Cape Cod debut this Memorial Day Weekend. The San Francisco-based company announced Thursday that beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday, people will be able to request a ride on Cape Cod. Big in cities, Uber announced a roll out of uberX in more than twenty popular seaside locations up and down the East Coast including Cape Cod and the Islands.
According to an Uber spokesperson, the company expects demand to be highest in the more populated areas of Cape Cod such as Hyannis and Falmouth. But the service will be available across the Cape.
Uber offers riders access to available drivers via a smartphone app. Riders pay for the service via the app (with a credit card on file)--eliminating the need for cash transactions.
The company's uberX service, their most affordable service, will be available on Cape Cod. On Cape, an uberX ride will cost $2.50 base fare plus $0.25 per minute and $1.90 per mile. According to Uber, uberX is about 29% cheaper than traditional taxi service. Off Cape rates in Massachusetts are a bit lower ($2 base fare plux $.021 per minute and $1.20 per mile).
Riders need not stay on Cape Cod. Trips can go over the Bourne or the Sagamore Bridge--in either direction without an additional fee, an Uber spokesperson said via email. Rate structure for Cape Cod and the Greater Boston area are different. If the ride begins off Cape and ends on Cape, the Greater Boston area rates will apply. For a ride that begins on the Cape and ends on the other side of the bridge, Cape Cod rates will apply.
uberX features everyday cars with seating for four people. Driver are vetted via a three-step criminal background check, according to the company's website. Ongoing reviews of driving records are also done, according to the website. Uber also provides end-to-end insurance. Riders are also rated, according to Uber. Abusive or inappropriate behavior can get a rider banned from using the app, if reported by a driver.
For riders with disabilities, the Uber representative said in an email, "The Uber app was built to expand access to safe, reliable transportation options for all, including users with visual impairments and other disabilities. All transportation providers that partner with Uber are able to accommodate folding wheelchairs." Most drivers are also happy to accommodate pets, according to the Uber website, but the decision is ultimately up to the driver. Uber suggests you call the driver as soon as your ride is confirmed to coordinate. Drivers are required by law to accept registered service animals.
The Uber app is available for iPhones and Androids.
As part of their East Coast beach launch, Uber will also be offering their services from Tybee Island to Bar Harbor and many points between including the Jersey Shore, the Hamptons, Newport and Ogunquit.