Revolutionary startup Uber announced last week that it is open for business in Guadalajara, Mexico. Uber is an application that allows passengers to connect directly with private drivers, who then give them a ride to their destination for a predetermined amount. Uber is disruptive, causing an uproar in some cities by taxi and livery operators who see the peer-to-peer sharing model as an existential threat to their businesses.
Uber started operations in Mexico in 2013 and expects to experience triple digit growth throughout the rest of its first year in the country of 120 million. “We grow by 20 percent each week. The number of cars is very variable but the plan is not to have them all available at all times, but to have the right amount of Uber (drivers) in the right geographic zones and at the correct hours,” said Rodrigo Arévalo, Uber’s director general for Mexico in an interview.
$24 (pesos) + $5.6 + $1.4 = Fare
Base Fare Per Kilometer Per Minute (Minimum $70 pesos)
Fare Examples (source: Uber Blog):
Acueducto – Valle Real $80
Chapultepec – La Estancia $120
Providencia – Aeropuerto $250
(all figures Mex. Pesos)
Uber is already in more than 120 cities globally, has more than 8 million users, and more than 1 million automobiles and drivers registered. and is valued at an astounding $17 billion dollars, even though the company is less than five years old. Initial plans for Mexico include Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Tijuana.
“Depending on the market, the regulatory climate, and the security situation, Mexico City is the largest urban market where we operate. The biggest challenge is always understanding how to adapt the product to the necessities of each city, at a precise level according to the market,” said Arévalo. “In México, we have 2 programs. UberX is a low cost line that provides a secure option, and UberEXEC, which provides the concept of everyone now having available a private chauffeur in an SUV or sedan.”
Initial Uber rates for Guadalajara are set at a base rate of 24 pesos plus 5.6 pesos per kilometer, plus 1.4 pesos per minute, with a minimum charge of 70 pesos, or about $5.40 US. Based on Uber’s own examples, a ride from Providencia to Guadalajara’s airport would cost 250 pesos, and a trip from Chapultepec to La Estancia would cost 120 pesos.