It is no secret that I am a Uber fanboy, if there is a term like that. I’ve been waiting for these guys to come to India and give us a little respite from the flagging a cab and waiting for a cab to come up. Ever since they’ve launched in Delhi and Mumbai, two cities I call home, I’ve seen myself in many of their cars, which include everything from a BMW X1 to a Mercedes E-class to a Toyota Innova, but not the broken 20 year old Mumbai cabs for the least.
The pricing is slightly high, but the money is worth it. In my numerous trips from the Airports recently, I’ve largely tried and used Uber to the extent possible, since I’ve managed to decode the taxi scam at the airport prepaid counters.
Take for instance the last time I landed at Mumbai two days back. Earlier, I used to pay about INR 250 for a non-air conditioned regular black and yellow cab from the airport to my home because the black-and-yellow cabs had a monopoly at the airport so they could charge a premium. The last time, I put on my phone after touchdown, flicked open the Uber App and ordered a car, which turned out to be a BMW X1 which was in the neighbourhood.
By the time I walked to the airport gates, I got a call from the chauffeur who confirmed his arrival and was waiting for me at the arrivals passenger pick-up area. I drove off with him, and at my home, I was charged INR 269 for this ride, not much different from what I would have paid the non-airconditioned black-and-yellow cab anyways.
Another day last week, arriving from an international flight at the new Terminal 2, I ended up paying about INR 500 for a regular cab (an 11 km ride), while with Uber, when I drove to that terminal it only costed me INR 370 or so.
My point is, they are not as expensive as perceived, and the rides are usually great. And they are a great relief from the current chaotic cab system around most of India. Uber operates in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad and Bangalore at this moment, and will be launching in Pune shortly. So, if you’re planning to hitch a ride with them, you can sign-up using my referral link which gives you INR 300 start-up credit.
Additionally, I reached out to Uber and for all the new users, they have a promocode you can apply under your promotions dashboard. The promocode is LiveFromALounge and is valid till 20 April 2014, for 2 free rides up to INR 500 across India. Remember, this does not mean you have to make a short ride, it just means if you exceed INR 500 as fare, the excess amount will be charged to your credit card directly.
- My Uber experience in Delhi, and get yourself a free ride!
- Uber launches in Bangalore, try it out with Uber Credits
- Uber launches in Mumbai & offers 2 free rides
- Uber launches in Hyderabad, get 2 free rides!
- Get 2 Uber rides free in India
- Uber launches in Chennai + last day for double referral signup