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Uber offers 10 million free rides and deliveries during coronavirus pandemic

Published Apr 1st, 2020 3:45PM EDT
Coronavirus news
Image: Richard Drew/AP/Shutterstock

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  • Companies like Uber are continuing to step up and offer a range of assistance in support of coronavirus relief, as the global pandemic continues to ravage cities and countries (and economies, for that matter) around the world.
  • Part of what the ride-hailing giant is offering to blunt the coronavirus impact includes a promise of 10 million free rides and food deliveries via UberEats. This is intended to help front-line healthcare workers, seniors who are most vulnerable to the virus, and government and nonprofit groups, among other constituencies.
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Uber has announced an expansion of its series of measures meant to provide some relief in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, which includes everything from offering no-contact deliveries of meals via its UberEats service as well as offering free rides to healthcare workers.

Along those lines, the company has just announced its promise to make 10 million free rides and deliveries available to a number of constituencies affected by the COVID-19 coronavirus including front-line healthcare workers as well as seniors, the latter of whom are most vulnerable to the disease.

In a note penned by Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, he explains that this is an expansion of Uber already starting to offer those free rides and meals to healthcare workers. “We’re ready to work with more cities, food banks, hospitals and others around the world to move whatever matters most to them,” he says by way of explaining the ramping-up of this work. “Organizations looking for support with rides or food deliveries can reach out to us at”

According to an Uber spokesperson, the ride-hailing giant will be scaling this effort in the coming months and fitting it to the most immediate local needs that it finds. The company will also cover the cost associated with these rides and food deliveries, which includes payments to the drivers completing them.

These are measures that follow Uber’s offer of financial assistant to its own drivers impacted by the virus, which includes 14 days’ worth of aid if drivers contract the virus or need to quarantine because of it. Uber is also promising to make cleaning supplies available to drivers so they can sufficiently disinfect their cars.

No surprise, this also all comes as the virus has taken a big bite out of Uber’s business, with the company experiencing double-digit percentage declines in ridership in major cities around the US as a result of millions of people staying home and practicing social distancing to slow down the virus’ spread. This is also the reason Uber is putting a greater emphasis on its UberEats arm right now, teaming up with groceries in a number of European countries to offer delivery of essential goods and food items to help people who are hunkering down at home — and who, incidentally, aren’t utilizing Uber rides as much at the moment.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.

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