* Information reported by The Hill was used as a source for this report.
Uber Technologies Inc. announced on Friday, March 11, 2022, US customers, excluding New York City, will have to pay a fuel surcharge starting Wednesday, March 16, 2022, as the ride-hailing firm tries to address concerns of drivers and couriers hit by record-high gasoline prices.
Customers will have to pay a surcharge of either $0.45 or $0.55 on each Uber ride depending on location and a surcharge of either $0.35 or $0.45 on each Uber Eats again, depending on location. The full amount will go straight to drivers. The surcharge is national, but it has one exception. Uber drivers in New York City received a 5.3% pay increase under the city's driver minimum wage law, the first of its kind in the US. It went into effect in 2019. However, the national surcharge will last for at least 60 days, after which a reassessment and adjustments will be made based on the feedback from workers and customers.
The financial judgment comes after many drivers and couriers expressed the hardship that has unexpectedly presented itself and is drastically affecting their earnings. Before the pernicious culmination, the company raised its profitability outlook with some asking if it was still worth getting behind the wheel. Western sanctions following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, a major oil producer, has crippled global oil trade and could further lift gasoline prices.
Uber reaffirmed its commitment to electric vehicles saying, " It's the best way to avoid skyrocketing gas prices in the long term." The company gives incentives of up $1 per trip up $4,000 annually to EV drivers and it has partnered with Hertz to make as many as 50,000 fully electric Teslas available for eligible drivers to rent by 2023.
The national average price for gas was $4.326 on Saturday, according to AAA. Gas prices broke a record this week, beating the previous record of $4.11 a gallon set in July 2008.