Transportation aggregator services have, over the past couple of years or so, become fairly ubiquitous in most urban environments, thereby transforming the way people hail a cab in cities around the world. While Uber happens to be the largest, most widely-used and most well-known of such companies globally, others like Lyft, Gett, Sidecar etc. are also trying to establish themselves by carving out their own niches in a growing market. With convenience becoming increasingly important to our fast-paced lives, many users of such services are willing to pay the occasional little premium that they charge on certain holidays over and above their regular fares. However, Uber’s infamous ‘Surge Pricing’ is something that most would like to avoid if possible.
For the uninitiated, Uber’s ‘Surge Pricing’ refers to the increased charges slapped on its customers by the ride-hailing service when it expects its cabs to be in high demand. Officially, the company says that it increases its charges “to ensure reliability when demand cannot be met by the number of drivers on the road”, but the company has, in the past, faced accusations of price gouging at times of high demand like inclement weather, say for instance. Either way, with New Year’s Eve being yet another of those occasions when the company decides to increase its rates, Business Insider has come up with a few tips for revelers in New York to avoid Uber’s increased fares this evening.
With last New Year’s Eve turning out to be the busiest night Uber ever experienced in its short existence thus far, this time around, the company has announced in advance that its surge pricing will come into effect thirty minutes into the New Year and last till four in the morning. Meaning, users hoping to hail a cab during that period will have to fork out the increased rates, which might well be significantly higher than the normal rates charged by the company. With Uber already having declared that its surge pricing will be applicable between 12:30 AM and 4:00 AM, just don’t go looking for an Uber cab during that period if you’re on a tight budget tonight. Simple really, when you think of it. Basically, you’ll probably need to either head home immediately after the ball drops at Times Square without partaking in the festivities thereafter, or party on till the dawn of New Year’s day to avoid the extra charges. If neither sounds feasible, be prepared for the sticker shock.