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News / City Life

UberPool carpooling is coming to Chicago

Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas

Looking to add a few random strangers to your Uber ride? The Tribune reports that the company's UberPool carpooling service will arrive in Chicago in "a matter of weeks." The service is currently available in Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C., allowing drivers to pick up multiple riders (usually two and sometimes three) who are traveling in the same direction.

UberPool is touted as being a more efficient method of transporting passengers, resulting in higher payouts for Uber drivers, who are driving multiple people at once, and lower fares for riders, who split the cost of the ride with other UberPool users. The favorable economics of the service have buoyed its popularity: Since the service's introduction in San Francisco in 2014, UberPool now accounts for 40 percent of all Uber rides taken in the city.

Of course, this service has some downsides, namely that trips may take a bit longer if your driver decides to pick up or drop off a fellow rider before reaching your destination. You're also going to be interacting with more strangers if you decide to UberPool—we all have stories about memorable Uber drivers, but now we'll be able to dish about fellow passengers. 

Now that Uber has the go-ahead to pick up passengers from airports, you might also be able to ease the sting of that $5 surcharge by carpooling back to your neighborhood with a new friend (or two).



Michael S

This is unsafe. Lyft has the option for drivers to opt out. Uber needs to do the same. There is NOT any more money to be made for the driver with Uber pool. It is simply more wear and tear on the vehicle. And not having a choice to opt out is not how it is as an independent contractor, which is what drivers are. If drivers a forced more and more to follow rules and regulations uber puts out everyday, then the drivers need to be treated as human beings. Like actual employees and paid a decent wage.