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Last week, Uber celebrated five years in New York City. Each day of the week, the service offered UberPool rides for a flat $5 fee beginning and ending in the borough that was being featured that day. And now, the company is trying out something new, with its commuter flat rate in New York City. (If you don’t have an Uber account, you can sign up now to receive a free ride [up to $20] from TPG.)
Beginning today, New Yorkers will have the option of traveling via Uber during commuting hours (Monday through Friday 7:00am-10:00am and 5:00pm-8:00pm) for a $5 flat rate. Of course, there are some special terms, including that the ride must begin and end in Manhattan below 110th Street. Perhaps the biggest catch of all, though, is that you’ll have to walk to catch your ride and from your drop-off location to your final destination, as Uber hopes to align the routes using the service in an effort to reduce time and maximize efficiency. Essentially, the new feature is a stop-and-go service that picks people up along the way — so you could be spending some time in the car with multiple strangers.
So while you may have to walk to get to your pick-up spot and to get from your drop-off location to your final destination, it could be worth it for the flat rate. Note that this change is only valid during the specified commuter hours, and UberPool will continue picking up customers at their desired locations for a split rate on the weekends and during non-commuter hours. There is some good news, too, as the $5 flat rate will never surge — you’ll always pay just $5 during these hours.
There’s no word from Uber on how long this will be around, as it’s currently labeled as “a pilot.” If you do choose to take advantage of the reduced rates, don’t forget to use a card that will maximize your spend with Uber, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or the Citi ThankYou Premier Card.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
|Intro APR||Regular APR||Annual Fee||Foreign Transaction Fee||Credit Rating|
|N/A||16.24%-23.24% Variable||Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95||0%||Excellent Credit|