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Uber Gets Into the Ride-Sharing Game in Paris

@SamShankman

Feb 04, 2014 11:30 am

Skift Take

Uber will first introduce ride-sharing services in cities where its losing customers due to too-high fares or regulations. Its further expansion will likely depend on how consumer pickup in the early markets.

— Samantha Shankman

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Christian Prade  / Flickr

A red Volkswagen Polo is one of the cars that drivers will use for UberPop. Christian Prade / Flickr


Uber is launching its very first ride-sharing service in Paris this week in what poses a potential threat to similar services in the U.S.

UberPOP is a cheaper service that allows Uber to cut rates by using non-professional drivers and smaller cars. Drivers have to be at least 21 years old with a 3-year-old driver’s license.

Uber’s current uberX services are provided by professional drivers with a specific license.

For now, the new service appears to be Uber’s way to cut rates and get around regulations that restrict black car drivers from using smaller cars. But Uber’s first experiment with a ride-sharing service could also be a launching point for the service’s expansion into other European cities and eventually the U.S.

This could be bad news for service like Lyft and Sidecar that have grown alongside Uber in the U.S.

UberPOP Rates

The minimum ride fare for uberPOP is half the minimum fare for UberX. The ride-sharing service is about 30 percent cheaper on a proposed route from Opéra to Hôtel de Ville.

Screen Shot 2014-02-04 at 10.19.50 AM

Uber services are currently available in Paris and Lyon, but UberPOP is only being introduced in Paris for now. The service is available directly on the Uber app that many Parisians have already downloaded.

The launch comes only a few weeks after taxi drivers attacked an Uber car near Charles de Gaulle Airport in protests of urban transit service that they say present unfair competition.

Uber launched services in Paris two years ago in December 2011.

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