Ride-hailing app Uber has launched its affordable travel offering uberX on a trial basis in Dubai.
The development comes after Uber signed a pact with Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in January to study mobility options to support Dubai Plan 2021, Uber said in a statement.
The pricing of uberX will include a Dhs5 base fare, with additional costs of Dhs1.37 per km or Dhs0.4 per minute. Until now, Uber and its rival Careem have been barred from offering economical services in Dubai as rules require their fares to be 30% higher than local taxis.
Uber’s fare is based on a combination of base fare, trip time and distance traveled, a Uber spokesperson said, adding that depending on the nature of the trip, some fares might be on par or slightly higher than RTA taxi fares.
uberX will be rolled out gradually over a trial period of three months starting Monday.
It starts with a limited number of vehicles and will expand to a wider pool of riders and driver-partners, Uber said. uberX will be priced lower than the current UberSELECT, while still offering the same expected levels of safety, reliability, and convenience. it said.
After the trial period, Uber and RTA will study the result and decide to whether to carry on, develop the service, or discontinue it.
This follows the rollout of uberX in cities in the region such as Riyadh, Cairo, and Beirut.
Recently, Uber added a Dhs3 ($0.82) surcharge to its bookings as part of new regulations imposed by transport authorities in neighboring Dubai on ride-hailing services.
The amount will be passed directly to RTA, Uber said.