With a city abrim with black cabbies, a nest of tube lines and red double deckers galore, when we first heard that the US company Uber was launching in the UK all those years back we had our apprehensions. And when they introduced their food delivery service to rival the big timers of the business, Deliveroo, it seemed only likely that they were destined to crash and burn eventually, but they had us fooled once more. While TFL has tried time and time again to remove Uber’s licence here in London, Uber have just announced plans to launch an Uber Boat on the Thames, despite their licence being up for renewal in September…
Granted the Thames already has its fair share of boats ferrying commuters, tourists and the occasional hardened Londoner from one side of the river bank to the next, but Uber has partnered with Thames Clipper’s to make their lives a little easier.
It certainly won’t just be like your usual Uber ride either. You won’t be able to hail down the boat in the usual Uber way. The boats will continue to run on a timetable, meaning you’ll have to make sure you don’t snooze your alarm that extra time if want to be in with a chance of getting to work on time. You will, however, be able to book onto the boat using Uber’s usual app, which is rather handy.
Keeping in line with the social distancing guidelines by the government, you won’t have to show the driver your ticket, instead you’ll be able to scan the QR code given upon boarding. You’ll also be able to purchase tickets in the usual way, including contactless or Oyster, so if you’re not an Uber fan, you haven’t got to download an extra app on your phone to use the boat. The price will also remain the same for now.
Also if you thought you’d found a loophole in the system and could arrange an Uber (vehicle style) to pick you up from the drop off point, you won’t be able to just yet.
The proposed plan is set to launch this summer, with official dates yet to be confirmed, but it could mean a whole new easier way for Londoners to get from one part of the city to the other without having to endure the medaling city centre traffic.
Learn more about the partnership at: www.thamesclippers.com