Alon Lits, General Manager for Uber Sub-Saharan Africa said on the occasion of the launch: ‘We’re really excited to be launching Uber in Kampala, a world-class African city. We are inspired by the city’s rapidly developing infrastructure and spirit of entrepreneurship and look forward to giving people in the city an affordable, easy and flexible choice to move around the city safely and reliably. At Uber, we are proud to connect millions of global citizens every to affordable and reliable rides. By offering a friendly and reliable complement to existing transport options, we can help improve urban mobility in Kampala. We are mindful of the city’s current traffic congestion, and we aim to be part of the solution in improving it, while creating new, fruitful opportunities for drivers. Ultimately, we hope to reduce the strain on the city’s roads, and minimise the environmental impact of traffic congestion that is part of a growing economy’.
Get Your Ride with UBER
• No more street hails or waiting outside to find a ride. You can start the Uber app from anywhere and wait safely for your car to arrive. That means no standing on the street to hail a cab or struggling to find the nearest bus stop late at night.
• You can easily identify the driver and car coming to pick you up. When a driver accepts your request, you see his or her first name, photo, and license plate number. You can also check whether others have had a good experience with him or her. In addition, the driver can see your first name and rating.
• You can contact the driver—and vice versa— through the app if there is any confusion around pick-up details.
Share Your Ride Details
• Share your ETA and location. You can easily share your ride details, including the specific route and estimated time of arrival, with friends or family for extra peace of mind.
• They’ll receive a link where they can see in real time the name and photo of the driver, their vehicle, and where you are on the map until you arrive at your destination—and they can do all of this without having to download the Uber app themselves.
After the Ride
• Feedback and ratings after every trip. After every ride, you and your drivers need to rate each other and provide feedback. Our safety team reviews this information and investigates any issues.
• 24/7 Support. If something happens in a car, whether it’s a traffic accident or altercation between you and your driver, our customer support staff are ready to respond to any issues 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
• Rapid Response. We have a dedicated Incident Response Team to answer any more urgent issues. If we receive a report that a driver or rider has acted dangerously or inappropriately, we suspend their account, preventing him or her from accessing the platform while we investigate.
Behind the Scenes
• Always on the map. Accountability is one of the things that makes riders feel safe in an Uber. We use GPS to keep a record of where a driver goes during the ride, allowing us to verify that the most efficient routes are being used, which creates accountability and a strong incentive for good behaviour.
• Working with law enforcement. In cases where law enforcement provides us with valid legal process, we work to get them the facts, for example by providing trip logs. Again, transparency and accountability are at the heart of the Uber experience.
• Pre-screening drivers. All drivers must undergo a screening process before they can use the Uber app.
Lits then added: ‘Uber is part of a broader evolution in transportation. It is a new and exciting platform that is changing the way we travel and shaping the future of cities across the world. Kampala is a progressive, forward-thinking city that is ready for safe, reliable and efficient transportation and we are so excited to be launching here’.
To celebrate Uber’s launch in Kampala, Uber will be providing free rides for all Ugandans to enjoy in the city of Kampala. Free rides can be accessed on the Uber app between 1pm Thursday 2 June 2016, and midnight on Sunday 5 June 2016.
Notably comes the launch on the day when the blockade of the Entebbe highway to the international airport was lifted again, something the Ugandan government now habitually does during State visits. This is regardless apparently of complaints from the business community or in equal disregard of travelers’ needs to reach the airport in time for their departure flights and of arriving visitors desire to reach their hotel without spending hours at end negotiating, especially during the rainy season, often very muddy back roads to the perimeter of the capital.
The new Entebbe highway from Kampala to the international Airport is only going to be ready in a year and a half, then providing alternatives for VVIP arrivals, but until then, unless there is a change in tunes, road closures will during State visits be the order of the day.
Welcome to UBER in Uganda!