In April 2015, Newcastle became the fifth city in the UK to host Uber – the smartphone app that lets people book a safe, convenient and affordable ride at the tap of a button.
On average, the time it takes for a rider to book a car in Newcastle to that car arriving has fallen to just three-and-a-half minutes, and an astonishing ten per cent of the city’s population has now taken an Uber trip.
One year on, we have recently expanded our service to Sunderland, bringing trips with fully licensed and vetted private hire drivers and vehicles, at the tap of a button, to Wearside.
One of the great things about Uber is our connection to the cities we operate in. Unlike so many of the other internet businesses out there, we have a truly hyperlocal presence that complements our global technology platform. Here in the North East, we have a full-time operations team on the ground in Newcastle and Sunderland, working hard every day to find new ways to deliver an even better experience for local riders and our partner-drivers.
Uber brings amazing benefits to cities: as well as helping millions of people get to their destinations, we’re opening up new economic opportunities for partner-drivers on the platform, and our efficiency means less congestion and less pollution – which benefits everyone.
And it’s not just about making transport work for cities – it’s about celebrating the people and places we love, too. For our first birthday in Newcastle we hosted a brilliant event for our partner-drivers at St James’ Park – to say thank you for helping to make Uber such a huge success story, and to talk about our plans for the future.
To mark our launch in Sunderland, we’ve partnered with Grace House to help raise funds for a fantastic charity that works with children and young people who are living with complex disabilities, health needs and life-limiting conditions.
Uber for Business
Since early 2016, riders have been able to set up a business profile in their Uber app where they can separate out work trips, charge them to a separate card and get a weekly round-up of receipts.
Now we’re building on this with the launch of our Uber for Business product, providing a complete transport solution for companies, from SMEs up to large businesses.
With a corporate account, companies can get a single monthly invoice for all their employees’ trips, and access to a real-time dashboard showing trips taken and money spent. This is a huge opportunity to save time and hassle as well as money, and we’re thrilled to be bringing this service to companies in the North East.
Part of the region’s tech industry
It’s a huge privilege to be part of the digital and technology community, and we’re in good company in the region that hosts events like Thinking Digital and hubs like Sunderland Software City. The year ahead is going to be a big one, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for us and our partners in the North East.
Uber has teamed up with North East Times to offer brand new Uber customers their first ride free (up to £15). Simply download the app at uber.com/app and use the code UBERNETIMES