The next time you get scooped up by an UberX driver, don't be surprised when you're charged an extra dollar. On Friday, the service announced it is adding a "safe rides fee" in U.S. cities where UberX ride shares are available. What does that $1 pay for?
This fee supports the increased costs associated with our continued efforts to ensure the safest platform for Uber riders and drivers. Those include an industry-leading background check process, regular motor vehicle checks, driver safety education, current and future development of safety features in the app, and insurance.
That extra fee appears separate from the rest of your receipt, as part of the company's new initiative to prove it is serious about customer and driver safety. Uber is still expanding quickly—most recently adding a courier service in NYC—but not without a few embarrassing PR flubs in the public spotlight.
Indeed, Uber still faces stiff pushback from regulators. The company's limousines are currently facing a ban in Berlin, for example, after a regional court ruled the vehicles violate state laws, which require cabs to return to a base after each journey.