UberPOOL in PH: How Uber’s carpool feature works

Vernise Tantuco

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UberPOOL in PH: How Uber’s carpool feature works


UberPOOL will be available in the Philippines June 15. Here's how it works

MANILA, Philippines – Manila’s traffic situation has commuters frustrated and often spending hours on the road daily. Could options from popular ride-sharing apps like Uber offer a solution? 

On June 15, Uber is uberPOOL – a ride sharing feature that they’ve launched in other countries and they say has been proven to cut down on the number of cars on the road.

During a press conference on Wednesday, June 8, Uber Philippines general manager Laurence Cua and Uber policy research analyst Amy Smith told the media about the company’s upcoming service.

If you’ll be using the feature, here are some things you should know about uberPOOL.

What it is: You’ll be able to share your ride and fare with one to 3 other people who are headed in the same direction.

Riders who choose to use the feature should expect to either pick someone up on the way to their destination or for someone to be in the car that picks them up.

Uber will calculate a route so that the person you pick up is nearby and the detour won’t take more than a few minutes, but riders who use the service should still expect the drive to take a bit longer than usual.

Like the other options, uberPOOL will show up as an option on the app.

Users must enter their destination before requesting a ride, because the price of the ride is given upfront. You can also choose to share your ride with only one to two people or up to 4 people.


Uber says that uberPOOL costs 25% less than a regular uberX, making that the cheapest feature they offer.

As soon as you enter your destination and choose how many people you want to share a ride with, the fare will be calculated. Fares per trip are set at 25% less than uberX rides because the cost is split between riders.

It’s possible for a driver to pick up a passenger using uberPOOL, pick another one up in the middle of the drive, drop off the first passenger, then pick someone else up, and so on. 

Uber has another ride sharing feature called uberHOP, where riders can request a ride, walk to a designated pick-up point, and share the ride with 5 other people. uberHOP is different because it’s limited – it’s only available at certain times in Makati, Bonifacio Global City, and the Ortigas area. uberHOP also takes in up to 6 passengers, compared to uberPOOL’s maximum of 4.

Both features will be available when uberPOOL launches 6 am on June 15 in Manila, though pool won’t be available in Cebu yet.

Other commute options in Manila

At the conference, Laurence was asked about the difference between uberPOOL and the UV Express, popularly known as the “FX,” a public transport service that uses Tamaraw FX cars that can seat at least 5 passengers.

In response, he said that the difference is in the waiting time: “You don’t have to wait in a particular stop. There is no planning ahead, it just happens… It doesn’t require people to change their behavior. If you’re used to getting a door-to-door experience from the office to your house or from the mall to your office, then it’s gonna be the same thing.”

Uber’s taxi app competitor in the Philippines, Grab, hasn’t launched their carpool feature, GrabHitch, in the country yet.

Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority launched a carpooling app in May called “Friend Trip,” which helps Facebook friends heading to the same area share a car.

Would you try out uberPOOL when it launches? Do you think it will ease the traffic situation in Manila? Let us know what you think in the comments! – Rappler.com

Going around town? Check out our coupon section for the latest Uber promos.

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Mayuko Yamamoto


Vernise Tantuco

Vernise Tantuco is on Rappler's Research Team, fact checking suspicious claims, wrangling data, and telling stories that need to be heard.