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Uber pays US car owners to switch to other transport modes for five weeks

The Uber logo is shown on the building in Los Angeles, California, U.S., February 14, 2024. (REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo)
By Yuvraj Malik | REUTERS

Uber will pay $1,000 in credits to certain commuters in the U.S. and Canada who ditch their cars for five weeks in favor of public and other transport services, it said on Thursday, in its latest effort to drum up business and help reduce emissions.

The ride-hailing and food delivery platform operator has, for several years, batted for the adoption of environment-friendly electric vehicles and has pledged $800 million to support its driver partners’ shift entirely to EVs by 2040.

It has partnered with rental car company Hertz to offer Tesla cars as a rental option for its drivers in the U.S. and Europe, although it is not clear how much of its total fleet currently comprises EVs.

Under the “One Less Car” initiative, Uber will select up to 175 car owners in Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington D.C., Miami, San Francisco, Toronto, and Vancouver, based on certain eligibility, for the five-week program beginning 22 July.

They will get $500 in credit redeemable on the Uber app, a $200 voucher for car rental or carshare services and $300 for use on alternate modes such as public transport.

A similar initiative by Uber in Australia last year showed that commuters mainly took to walking, cycling and ride-share after ditching their cars.

The move comes as transport operators, including major U.S. airlines, expect robust tourist activity and travel this summer.

According to Uber, the U.S. has 233 million private vehicles, about 80 million of which are driven less than 10 miles a day on average.

Editor’s Note: Reporting by Yuvraj Malik in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza

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