To get a ride, Uber says take a walk


The new rideshare option is a deviation from Uber POOL, which lets riders save a few bucks by allowing drivers to pick up other riders going in the same general direction.

The ride ends at a spot near your destination chosen by the driver, requiring the user to walk a short distance.

Stock says Uber's new service will help transit agencies by giving riders easier access to transit hubs and that the company has already coordinated with Cincinnati on a possible partnership.

The service was first tested in San Francisco and Boston in November, and launched Wednesday in L.A., San Diego and Denver.

Users may also have to exercise a bit of patience when ordering a ride using Express Pool. When you request Express Pool, Uber notifies you of the location to walk to for your ride.

The new version, called Express POOL, will be the cheapest option yet among Uber's offerings for hailing a pickup.

Rides on the Express Pool service will be "even more affordable and consistent", according to the company.

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The goal is to make the overall ride faster and more direct for all users. Ideally, riders will save up to 50 percent versus using Uber Pool and up to 70 percent as compared to Uber X.

From a public policy perspective, these types of ride-pooling services represent an enormous opportunity to provide more high quality, low-cost transportation to more people who don't have access to cars or public transit than ever before, said Daniel Sperling, director of the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California-Davis.

"People love the price [of regular Uber POOL], but have mixed feelings about the experience", Uber lead project manager Ethan Stock said in a press call Tuesday.

A sign outside Uber headquarters in San Francisco.

"The future of transportation in cities includes a shift towards more space-efficient modes of transportation and away from personal auto ownership", Zipcar co-founder Robin Chase said in the release.

Notably, Uber Express Pool is the company's first product in over three.

"Looking beyond this launch, we're even more excited about future opportunities to integrate Express Pool and other transportation options to complement and extend the reach of public transit", Stock said in the release. Last August, Uber hired CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, replacing founder Travis Kalanick in an attempt to clean up the company's internal culture.