Uber is making it easier for pet owners who want to travel with animals and for drivers who don’t want to deal with the extra hassle.
Surprise pets are one of the most popular complaints that Uber drivers report, which is why the company is introducing a feature that eliminates these types of cancellations. Uber Pet is a bit more expensive and will be introduced on October 16 in select cities, ensuring that drivers are happy and that customers get the transportation they need.
The Verge reports that the first cities where the feature will be introduced are Austin, Denver, Nashville, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Philadelphia, Phoenix, and Tampa Bay.
The option for selecting Uber Pet will appear on the opening menu of the app, where the Uber X and Uber Pool options appear. When choosing Uber Pet, a charge of $3 to $5 is applied straight away, guaranteeing no surprise charges. Drivers who don’t want pets in their cars can opt out of Uber Pet, but those who participate will earn a significant portion of the surcharge according to Uber.
Passengers who are riding with service animals are exempt from this, having the right to board any Uber without having to pay the surcharge.
Other ride share services like Lyft and Juno have no explicit pet policy, leaving it up to the driver’s discretion to either accept or cancel the ride. These services put the responsibility on the requester, encouraging them to contact drivers before hand to ask them if there’s a problem with having a pet in their car.
If all goes well in the testing stage, the Uber Pet option should appear throughout apps all over the country within the next couple of months.