Uber has announced the pilot launch of UberBOAT service in Mumbai. This is the first time the world’s largest ridesharing company is exploring a mode of transport beyond land-based transport in the country. Uber is already exploring air transport in the name of Uber Air and as part of Uber Elevate and is now expanding to offer water-based transport as well. The mode of transport being introduced in partnership with Maharashtra Maritime Board will be an on-demand service and will provide transportation via speed boats from Gateway of India, Elephanta Islands and Mandwa Jetty, three of Mumbai’s popular coastal routes.
The service will become available starting February 1 and riders can choose between two variants based on seating capacity. There is 6-8 seater option called UberBOAT and 10+ seater for UberBOAT XL. The announcement is the first sign of Uber‘s vision to transform itself into a multi-modal transportation platform in India. In line with this strategy, UberBOAT says that it will enable riders in Mumbai to request a speedboat at the tap of a button through the Uber app. The ridesharing company says that the launch will make waterway commute in the city efficient and convenient.
“We are excited to launch UberBOAT in Mumbai, in partnership with Maharashtra Maritime Board. With UberBOAT, we will tap the vast potential of the city’s waterways transport system. We aim to provide efficient and easily accessible services to riders who are looking at navigating through these specific routes,” said Prabhjeet Singh, Head of Cities, Uber India & South Asia.
“Our vision is to make Mumbai as the sea transport and tourism hub of the country in collaboration with Maharashtra Maritime Board. As we continue to reimagine the waterways of Mumbai through a host of ambitious projects and partnerships, we believe UberBOAT will play a pivotal role in improving connectivity and will work closely with Uber to make this pilot a success,” Sanjay Bhatia, Chairman, Bombay Port Trust, commented on the launch.
“We are delighted to see the first ever and unique initiative by Uber to launch uberBOAT service in Mumbai. We are confident that this will further bolster the city’s waterway transport facilities by providing locals/Mumbaikars as well as tourists a reliable and convenient option to travel between Gateway of India, Mandwa and Elephanta,” added Vikram Kumar, CEO, Maharashtra Maritime Board.
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Uber says all the UberBOAT rides will be equipped with best in class safety features including lifejackets, emergency contact details, printed collaterals along with a manual highlighting safety instructions. The rides are priced at Rs 5,700 for UberBOAT and Rs 9,500 for UberBOAT XL for all the active routes. Uber has previously said that Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru will be among first cities to get Uber Air service in 2020.