For people using Uber in some major US cities, their next ride might be one they take with strangers.
The ride-hailing giant on Tuesday said it’s expanding its new ride-sharing program, UberX Share. The new feature, which pairs riders heading in similar routes, is now available in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Phoenix, San Diego, Portland-Oregon, Indianapolis and Pittsburgh. UberX Share will expand across more cities this summer, according to a blog post from Uber.
When people choose to share their ride through UberX Share, they’ll receive an upfront discount along with 20% off the total fare if they are matched with another rider.
To avoid prolonged rides and delays, UberX Share will match riders going in the same direction. The new feature is designed with punctuation in mind: Uber said riders who use the sharing feature will arrive no more than eight minutes later than an UberX ride.
“This new shared rides offering will provide a more affordable, efficient and sustainable experience for riders, drivers, the cities we serve, and for Uber,” Andrew Macdonald, senior vice president of mobility at Uber, said in the blog post.
During the beginning of the pandemic, Uber suspended its ride-sharing feature, Uber Pool. It instituted UberX Share as a pilot program in Miami in November to combat rising ride costs.
The return of the ride sharing option comes amid country-wide gas price increases, as well as Uber’s expanded sustainability initiatives. Uber aims to become a zero-emission platform by 2040 and, by 2030, have all of its rides in the US, Canadian and European cities take place in electric vehicles.