Wednesday, September 10, 2014


I only heard the word for the first time a few weeks ago, when a friend said he'd invested in an UBER car. I didn't pay a whole lot of attention.

Then last week, my friend Jane who was visiting from L.A. sent an email, saying, "I'll see you at your place--I'll come by taxi or UBER."

She explained a bit when she arrived, but it really hit me when it was time for her to go back to her hotel and it started raining gatos y perros.

"You'll never get a cab now," I told her.

"Never fear. I've got UBER," she said as she pulled out her IPhone. Within a matter of seconds she had a taxi on the way, with the driver's name, license plate, phone number, and make of car, and was tracking his route from Polanco, with minute by minute updates as to how long it would take him to arrive at my house, and what route he was taking. A minute before he was to arrive, we headed downstairs, and there was Alfonso pulling up in a gleaming white BMW.

"And when you arrive, you just walk away--no cash changes hands, no tipping allowed," she explained. "You know the amount when you arrange for the car and they charge your credit card.
And if you leave something in the car, they know how to reach you."

Of course Nick, who is fascinated by all things gadget-related, immediately signed up. He was off to Lima the next day, where he UBERed several times. Upon returning to Mexico City, the lines for a taxi were longer than any he'd ever seen at the airport--at least a half hour wait. But with UBER he was in a taxi within 5 minutes heading home---and it cost about 50 pesos LESS than the Taxis Autorizados.

I hear the future calling.

You do need an IPhone to make use of this service, and sign up on their website:



Anonymous said...

Where have you been, Jim? Uber has been an option here (and every major city in the world) for over a year now. Another smartphone App (similar to Uber) here in MexCity is Yaxi; but with Yaxi they send the nearest licensed & vetted taxi to you ... even if you're standing on a street-corner, and you pay Cr. card, cash or PayPal. I love it.

Anonymous said...

You can use Uber on an iPhone or with an android. We love Uber, beats the heck out of street taxis AND it's cheaper than Yaxi! Uber is the best!

Dennis Argall said...

Note this

Unknown said...

Thanks for the excellent post. I'm amazed how quickly people in DF have turned against Uber. It seemed to me to be an ingenious method to increase safety and security in a city that people like Francisco Goldman think is close to collapse. Even the locals on the DF TripAdvisor forum are against it.

Mahalakshmi.M said...

I think that if the taxi organizations had been providing adequate service to the consumer, there's wouldn't be a market niche for Uber to exploit. Adapt or die, cab companies.

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