Ride sharing to rev up a gear with new app

10 March, 2017

Riding sharing in Perth is set to go to the next level when Uber launches its new UberPOOL app in Perth this year.

The app will allow people departing a similar location and heading to the same general place to share an Uber ride — cutting down on transport costs and congestion.

Uber Australia and New Zealand general manager David Rohrsheim will talk about the new ride sharing service at a CCI breakfast on 5 April.

“The idea around UberPOOL is if we can find somebody else in your street that’s headed in roughly the same direction at roughly the same time we’ll give you the option to share the ride and you’ll both pay almost half the price,” he says.

“We think it’s pretty cool and it’s really attacking the congestion problems that cities have and so we would love to see the city and Government backing it fully.

“Next time you’re at a set of traffic lights have a look around and see how many cars have four empty seats.

“What we’re really proud of is this doesn’t cost the Government a cent.

“This is a new transport option that we are excited to deliver in Perth at no cost to Government, which is pretty unusual for a transport project that can move hundreds of thousands of people.

While the app could prove a congestion buster, its viability and effectiveness could be hamstrung by levies that several State Governments, including WA, are considering.

Last year Transport Minister Bill Marmion confirmed they were considering a $1 or $2 levy on Uber drivers as part of a suite of other reforms also being considered for the transport industry.

“There’s been speculation about adding a levy of a dollar or two on every trip and so suddenly if you’ve got three passengers in every car you’re talking about $5 worth of taxes,” Rohrsheim says.

“That’s not really going to promote a whole lot of carpooling.”

Rohrsheim says he will use the CCI breakfast to discuss UberPOOL’s issues and the next steps for the company.

“We’re excited about UberPOOL and we want to start talking about it so the government understands exactly what impact those proposed policies will have,” he says.

Rohrsheim will be joined by CCI’s chief economist Rick Newnham at the breakfast and both will share their thoughts on the next chapter of the sharing economy.

►Want to learn more? Book your tickets to the “The Sharing Economy: What it means for WA” event now.