"While we're encouraging riders to continue following local health guidelines and travel only as necessary, we've also been listening to their feedback about ways our platform can facilitate opportunities they're looking for", Uber Director of Rider Operations Niraj Patel said in a statement. Clients can not use the function for trips to or from the airport, or for trips.
Uber said it would offer rides by the hour in some USA cities, a feature aimed at helping Americans with essential trips during the coronavirus pandemic. Riders can not use this "hourly" feature for trips to or from the airport.
Uber said it chose to expand the hourly feature to the United States after riders requested an option for extended trips during the pandemic to avoid exposure to different drivers and vehicles when taking multiple trips in a confined time period. The customer will end up paying for the time they selected, even if the trip really takes less time.
To use this, you'll be able to request this "hourly" trip as you would any on-demand ride, while setting multiple stops as needed throughout your journey.
However, there are a few restrictions to the hourly function.
If a rider's trip goes over their set time limit, they'll be charged at a rate each minute over the time limit.
Apparently the hourly option has already been attested in cities across Australia, Africa, Europe and the Middle East, so presumably it will eventually make its way to most or all of Uber's markets. If you go over that you'll have to pay a per mile rate for the overage. Eventually more cities will have the hourly option.
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It requires drivers and riders to have face masks on. More than 3,700 full-time employees, or about 14 percent of its workforce, have been laid off.