Ride sharing juggernaut Uber announced plans to allow users to book air travel and train travel via their platform. The new capabilities will, at first, be only available to United Kingdom users and marks a significant expansion in features for the company.
Earlier this year the ride sharing company known as Uber passed an important milestone with its London operations when it secured a 30-month license to operate in the European city. Thus ended a lengthy fight with the city over whether the firm was a “fit and proper” use for the UK capital. But hailing cars is only the beginning of Uber’s long-term plans to build what it calls a “superapp.”
According to an NBC report, Uber has plans to extend its platform beyond car sharing / taxi-like service to air and rail transportation. The company already allows users to rent bikes, boats, scooters and other similar items via the platform, but expanding into air and rail travel marks a significant expansion into busy market segments.
The same NBC report offered this statement from Jamie Heywood, the CEO of Uber UK where he noted that Uber intends to become, “a one-stop-shop for all your travel needs.”
It appears the company will partner with other booking platforms and take a cut of each transaction. Of particular interest is the opportunity for the company to offer a seamless, end-to-end, transportation experience for users. For example, a traveler could book an Uber to the airport, book a flight to Paris, then add in a train to their final destination through a partnership with Eurostar.
The company even plans to offer hotels via the app, providing Uber users a single place to book an entire travel experience from start to finish.