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Uber is scrapping its Uber Select, Black, Lux and SUV rides in favour of a single top-tier service dubbed Uber Premium.
Uber Premium is available as of today, 27 June 2019, although the other ride options will remain available until 20 August.
In explaining the changes, Uber says "We learned that drivers felt support for Uber Select, Black, Lux, and SUV did not always meet their expectations. Having one premium ride option will help riders know exactly which trip type to request when looking for a premium ride."
Additionally, "the number of premium ride options available to riders (Uber Select, Black, Lux, and SUV) was confusing" while the wide range of vehicles across those categories "made for an inconsistent rider experience."
What's different about Uber Premium?
Uber says its new Premium tier will offer "a luxury car with added style and leg room", although "Uber Premium does not guarantee you’ll get a vehicle with commercial plates," such as HC plates in NSW.
Uber Premium passengers will be able to make in-app requests for "a quieter ride, cooler temperature or help with your bags." In addition, Uber Premium drivers "will now wait up to 10 minutes".
Based on this quote for an Uber ride from North Sydney to Sydney Airport's international terminal, Uber Premium pricing will be pitched above the popular Select option but come in slightly below Uber Black.
Uber Premium airport pickup points
The Uber Premium pick-up point at Sydney Airport will be kerbside at the Limo Pickup area, while at Melbourne Airport "you can also take advantage of pickups from the dedicated VHA pickup bays on the ground level," Uber says.
At Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, and Gold Coast airports, Uber Premium drivers will wait at the designated ride-share pickup area.
What cars and drivers qualify for Uber Premium?
The list of makes and models eligible for Uber Premium service includes Audi, BMW, Chrysler 300, Genesis, Holden Caprice, Infiniti, Jaguar, Land Rover Discovery, Range Rover, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Tesla Model S and Model X and the Volvo S90, XC60 and XC90.
Those car must be less than six years old, and their drivers must have completed 20 or more trips with a star rating of 4.6 or higher.
Australian Business Traveller has contacted Uber Australia for further information.