On Wednesday, Uber announced the launch of a private chartered boat service on the Greek island of Mykonos. The service is scheduled to launch this summer and will give locals and tourists another transportation option on the water.
Uber Boat in Mykonos will have a capacity of eight passengers per vessel. The boats will stop off at designated points and the prices will be determined by the number of stops per given journey.
Uber has offered boating options in the past in a variety of locations. However, this will be the first time that the company owns a boating service, whereas previous services were owned by external companies.
Upcoming Uber Boat service on Greek island of Mykonos
The new boat service, which will allow passengers to whizz around coastal locations on the island of Mykonos, was announced at Uber’s third annual Go-GET product event in New York.
Uber has offered a boating service in the past. The “Boat to Work” initiative was launched in San Francisco in 2013. Then, in 2020, the company collaborated with the London ferry service Thames Clippers to offer Uber Boat to commuters in London.
To use Uber Boat on Mykonos, passengers will use the Uber app to book a boat in much the same way they might book a car through Uber’s more widely known and used road travel service.
The service will be introduced to Mykonos this summer, but Uber Boat might be rolled out to other Greek islands if it proves to be popular and successful on Mykonos.
Uber in Greece
Uber expanded its operations to Greece in late 2014. The arrival of the ride-hailing app may have offered passengers in Greece another transportation option, but its introduction was met with hostility by the majority of taxi drivers, who felt that the company threatened their livelihoods.
Since 2014, there have been continued tensions between Greek taxi drivers and Uber. In March 2018, Greek taxi drivers in Athens who were members of the SATA union went on strike to protest against the expansion of Uber in the country.
Uber has also had to face competition posed by Greek taxi finder applications such as Taxibeat and Taxiplon, which have effectively eliminated any competition in terms of radio taxis and have forced companies to create their own mobile apps.
In April 2018, the Greek government announced that it would introduce tighter regulations for the transport sector. This prompted Uber to withdraw some of its services in Greece, most notably UberX which had launched in Athens in 2015.
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