Metro Manila · "Uber" - a new taxi experience

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If you have enough of endless taxi lines, old vehicles, and choosy drivers, you should try out Uber. The company connects passengers with private drivers via its mobile app - easy, safely, and quickly.

Yes, the Uber rates are considerably higher than a standard taxi. However, the experience safes you a lot of hassle and almost gives you the feeling of having a private chauffeur at your disposal: no endless waiting and waving hands for a cab, no haggling with the driver about extra charges because of "grabing trapik" (heavy traffic). You order a ride with your smartphone and within ten minutes or so a sleek black high-end car shows up. You pay automatically via credit card at the end of your trip, giving tips is discouraged by the company. 

Uber started in San Francisco in 2009 and is already available in more than 70 cities worldwide. In Metro Manila, the services are offered since February 2014. Available car types are, among others, Toyota Altis, Nissan Teana, and Ford Focus. You can download the application (app) for free and create an account by providing your credit card details.

Uber Rates for Manila: 90 pesos base fare, 2.10 pesos per minute, and 12.92 pesos per kilometer. Minimum fare is 120 pesos. There are airport flat rates, ranging from 700 pesos (Makati) to 1,000 pesos (Tomas Morato).

You can check the approximate price for your desired route on the website. A trip from Makati to Alabang, for example, would be approximately 390 to 490 pesos (as long as traffic is not too bad, we suppose). In comparison, rates for a regular cab in Manila are 40 pesos base fare, 3.50 pesos for every 300 meters, and 3.50 pesos for two minutes of waiting time.

(Uber has recently been criticized in other countries for its "surge pricing" practice during times of intense demand. This can apply in Manila as well but we do not have information on how common it is and how much the rates change in this case.)