On April 28, Uber launched a car rental service across the country. The program, called Uber Rent, offers in-app bookings from popular brands like Avis and Hertz.
Uber Rent came about after the company noticed a shortage of rental cars in the United States after rental companies sold off much of their idle fleets in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
When it comes to the prices for a rental car, Uber is letting the rental companies set the prices, and the rideshare company will take a cut of the bookings. This is similar to how traveling booking sites work.
Even with the reduced need for rental cars, Uber believes it can attract customers to reserve rental cars by making the experience easier. The rental car experience through the app will be streamlined and feature a decluttered look, which was designed based on feedback from user testing.
In order to attract customers to the new service, Uber plans to offer an initial 10 percent rebate on a booking with Uber Cash. Customers will be able to use the rebate money on the Uber app for other purchases. The company has not disclosed how long the discount will last.
In addition to the rental service, Uber is also launching a valet service in Washington, D.C., next month that will let people rent cars and have them driven to their location. It plans to expand the valet service across the country later this year. According to a spokesperson, the price for valet services will be similar to the cost of an on-demand ride.
Given social distancing concerns, Uber plans to offer contactless rental deliveries by developing an authentication method like using a PIN code to ensure only the customer can access the vehicle. When it comes to the people who will deliver the rental cars, valet drivers will be drawn from anyone on Uber’s platform who is over 25, has opted into its “Work Hub” program, and joined the Avis Preferred membership program.
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