Expatme Experiences - Uber in Mexico
Did you know that Uber is now also available in Mexico? Uber you ask? Whats that and how does it all work? We have tried it out for you and can tell you: It works great!
Read up on our newest article from the Expatme Experience Series on the taxi service that is not at all like regular city taxis in Mexico. Do you also have something to share? Contact us, we are always happy to receive your stories.
#UberLove or #UberNo?
by Astrid Sandvall
It was a Thursday night in the neighborhood of Polanco in Mexico City and I needed a way home- so I opened my app, selected my pickup location, chose my desired car type and sent “Request”. In two minutes, I had a private driver coming to take me to my destination. In my phone screen, I could even see the license plate and my drivers’ picture and name (Raul).
After just four minutes- in which I barely had time to go outside of the coffeehouse where I was waiting- Raul arrived in a sleeky black private car service. As I got into the car, he went to the trunk to get us bottles of water. Someone seemed more worried about my hydration than I was (That won’t happen in any other means of transportation in Mexico City, thats for sure) Now, bottle in hand, we started our ride in the Uber style.
For those not familiar, Uber “is not a taxi but a private car service” as Raul, the driver, emphasized (I think as a slight, quiet defense against all the protests against Uber organized by the taxi drivers in Mexico City). For me, it is an app to use if you don’t want to be standing in the street looking for a taxi that may take one minute or one hour to come. It is also very convenient for those that dont have or dont want to be carrying cash around.
And despite the protests and whether it is too convenient to hate or too hip to ignore, there is already some #UberLove in Mexico City. The private cars available through the app are soaring and its’ popularity too. For those familiar with one app or two, Uber becomes easy to use (It takes just a few keystrokes to sign up- Name, cellphone and credit card details, a few clicks to download the Uber app and you are in). For those traveling long distances- Teotihuacan, Toluca or Puebla for example, there are fixed rates. For music lovers, you can even choose, the app lets’ you chose the music that is playing during your ride.
For the security seekers, through the app, there is a trace between you, the route that you take and the person that drives you. Far more security that your usual taxi drive and a trace that many of us want in this unpredictable city; which as Raul well explained, it is safer both for the driver and the client.
“So, for that, we pay 20% of each ride to Uber but I think it is worth it” said Raul as he opened the door for me and as I got down the car, I received the 172 pesos Uber bill right into my inbox and I thought that for all its’ perks, UberX is still keeping a competitive price since I usually pay more to a taxi for the same ride and without the same service. So just as Raul, I thought, it is worth it for me too.