Sun. Jun 16th, 2019

Uber to offer air cabs in New York, looking at India too


WASHINGTON: Looking for a new experience? Come July, Indians travelling to New York can opt for an air cab service from the John F Kennedy airport to Lower Manhattan. Uber, popular for cab services in metro cities in India, will be offering Uber Copter services for $200-225 in New York. The service aims to reduce travel time to 30 minutes from the usual two hours it takes to cover this distance.

The copter will ferry four passengers and one carry bag per person. Around 65.2 million tourists visited New York in 2018. New Jersey, which is part of the New York Metropolitan area, has a significant Indian population.

Uber to boot riders from app if they repeatedly misbehave

Uber says that riders with a rating from drivers that’s significantly below average could lose their ability to ride. But before that happens they’ll get tips on how to improve ratings by being polite, not leaving trash in vehicles and not asking the driver to violate the speed limit. Uber says they’ll get several chances before getting the boot.

The Uber app allows a passenger to choose the sky port from where she/he is to be ferried over the congested areas of New York — either to the airport or to Lower Manhattan. The passenger arrives at the sky port in a Uber cab and is then ferried to the chosen destination. Further, the passenger will be provided doorstep services by Uber cabs.

While India is among the five countries being considered by Uber to launch the air service, it is still under evaluation. Last year, Uber Elevate head Eric Allison met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss air cab services in metro cities in India.

India plans to order taxi aggregators like Uber, Ola to go electric: Report

India plans to order taxi aggregators like Uber and Ola to convert 40% of fleet of cars to electric by April 2026, according to a source and records of government meetings to discuss rules for clean mobility. Some taxi players have previously attempted to operate electric cars in the country, but with little success given inadequate infrastructure & high costs.

At the Uber Elevate Summit in Washington, it was announced that India — along with Australia, Brazil, France and Japan — are under evaluation for the service. The criteria include market factors, environment conditions, policy & regulations, and infrastructure.

At the summit, Melbourne was declared as the first international city where the air service will be launched in 2020.

(The author is attending the Uber Elevate Summit 2019 in Washington at the invitation of Uber)



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