Uber has finally entered the motorbike taxi war, launching the on-demand service in Thailand today.
The company says it chose to pilot UberMOTO in Bangkok, where over 1,500 new cars hit the streets every day and the average daily commute takes two hours. That congestion has made moto-taxis a common form of transport in Bangkok, notes Uber.
While the initial focus is Bangkok, the service was designed for all emerging markets, it says. This means Uber may be taking the service to neighboring countries such as Vietnam and Indonesia soon.
It will have some catching up to do since competitor GrabBike is already present in all three markets, while Sequoia-backed Go-Jek now dominates the Indonesian market.
Marking the launch in Bangkok, Uber partnered with the Thai Traffic Police and Head Awareness Club to put emphasis on safety.
The city requires all motorcycle drivers and riders to wear a helmet so UberMOTO will make it available to passengers.
Uber says its usual safety features are also in place such as live GPS tracking, a two-way feedback system, and the ability to share trip details.
UberMOTO rates in Bangkok start at US$0.28 + US$0.1 per kilometer + US$0.02 per minute. The minimum fare is US$0.28.
Converted from Thai baht. US$1 = ฿35.71.