Uber suspends shared rides, tweaks Uber Eats to serve local communities better

Adhering to guidance from the CDC and other health agencies, Uber is suspending its Uber Pool service to help reduce the spread of the virus. Uber is also trying to leverage its food delivery platform to reduce the strain to restaurants and delivery drivers.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Uber has announced that it is suspending its carpool service, Uber Pool, in the United States and Canada. The company’s regular Uber ride offerings and food delivery service, Uber Eats, will still be in service.

While the U.S. and Canada are targeted, Uber is mulling enacting the same suspension in other countries. In the meantime, the company is trying other avenues to “flatten the curve” of the virus outbreak. There is a new in-app message reminding riders to “travel only if necessary” and to exercise caution to protect their safety and the community.

Addtionally, Uber is trying to utilize its Uber Eats platform to help local restaurants, drivers, and first responders. The company is waiving delivery fees and promoting delivery from local restaurants that are new to Uber. Uber says this is to make up for the lack of in-restaurant dining. The company also announced that customers have the option to request deliveries be left on their doorstop to avoid coming into contact with Uber drivers. Finally, Uber says it’s committing to deliver 300,000 free meals to first responders and healthcare workers in the U.S. and Canada.

As more people practice social distancing and self-isolation to limit the spread of the coronavirus, ride sharing services and taxi services are starting to feel the strain. San Francisco instituted a “shelter in place” policy that bans all non-essential transportation. To help drivers affected, Uber is offering financial assistance and expanding its paid sick leave policy.

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