Uber is finally introducing upfront pricing
If you're heading home for the holiday, you probably want to know exactly how much your cab ride is going to be from the airport to your home. At long last, Uber is going to make it happen.
Starting today, when you reserve an Uber more than an hour before your pickup time, you'll lock in the cost of the ride. This means that after you schedule your Uber, a window will pop up confirming that your ride is scheduled, and your fare has been set. The exact fare you'll be paying at the end of the ride will be displayed in the window.
Previously, when you booked an Uber an hour or more in advance, you were just given an estimate of the fare. That could vary widely from the price you would be charged after the ride if there was an unexpected surge. The app noted on its "Fares" page that "Actual fares and surcharges may vary" from the estimate. But such "estimates" are no longer.
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This new locked-in pricing feature is intended to ease the stress of travel. An Uber spokesperson told Mashable that customers have, in the past, most often been surprised by their final fares when bad weather or popular events led to unexpected demand.
You can budget around your ride without worrying about unexpected price increases. The change will give customers "one less thing to stress about ahead of an early flight," an Uber spokesperson told Mashable.
This feature isn't exactly new, though. Uber's chief rival Lyft rolled out a similar feature last year that shows users their locked-in rates for all rides. The total price that Lyft displays includes all fees, taxes, and tolls, and is calculated based on your "usual time and distance" if you don't initially select a destination.
Uber's feature is available in all U.S. cities where Uber operates. To use the feature, tap the car icon next to "Where to?" and select your date and time, add your pickup and dropoff locations, and select the type of Uber you're looking for. If your ride was scheduled more than an hour in advance, your upfront fare will be displayed.