What is UberSUV?
Uber is expanding its services quickly. One of its most recent added categories is UberSUV, a premium car service catering to large groups. Like an UberBLACK car, you can request an Uber SUV through the Uber App. Uber SUV is another version of the high-end, private Uber Black Car Service — however, UberSUV allows for six passengers, unlike UberBLACK (which only accommodates four passengers).
UberSUV is is the relevant option when you need a larger car, but still want retain the prestige of a limousine. UberSUV is listed as the upscale version of Uber’s “Extra Large” service. The title UberSUV actually pertains to two other Uber services: Uber BLACK and Uber XL. Technically speaking, UberXL + UberBlack = UberSUV.
UberSUV Car List
If you request an Uber SUV, you’re likely to get picked up by an Uber driver in one of these vehicles:
- Lincoln Navigator
- Cadillac Escalade
- Mercedes-Benz GL-Class
- Chevrolet Suburban
- Chevrolet Tahoe / Tahoe Hybrid
- GMC Yukon XL/Denali/Hybrid
- Ford Expedition / EL
- Infiniti QX56
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How does UberSUV work?
When you request UberSUV through Uber’s mobile App (installed on a compatible smartphone), Uber matches you with a nearby UberSUV driver. A nearby car is dispatched to your location. You’ll receive the name of your driver, their picture, an Uber phone number (to contact the driver), and the model of their car. You’ll be able to watch in real-time (via the Uber App map) as the driver approaches your location.
Once you’ve reached your location, your credit card will be billed automatically (no cash involved). The Uber app does not currently enable tipping (though some customers add a voluntary gratuity).
Pricing: How much does it cost?
Uber SUV is one of the more expensive options in Uber’s line of services. It’s different in different cities; but the bottom line is this: The base price (i.e., how much you’re paying just to have the car show up) ranges from $14 to $25.
Notably, that is a substantial price difference as compared to UberX pricing (where ‘base price’ is typically only $1). Also, UberSUV’s minimum fare (i.e., how much it costs you to actually take a ride anywhere) ranges from $25 to $50. This is slightly higher than Uber Black rates and a substantial increase over UberX rates, which tend to be only a minimum fare of $4.
Becoming an Uber SUV driver:
If you’re interested in becoming an Uber SUV driver, there are some specific vehicle requirements to be aware of:
First off, all UberSUV vehicles must seat at least six passengers.
Secondly, all vehicles need to be full-size SUVs (even though mid-size vehicles can sometimes meet the seating requirements, Uber HQ requires cars in this category to be actual full-size SUVs). This is for two reasons: the visual aesthetic of the car, and also because full-size SUV’s tend to get better safety ratings.
Third: Speaking of aesthetics — as with an Uber Black car, an Uber SUV car MUST be black on the outside, as well as on the inside. If your car does not have the classic black interior/exterior, you’ll still be able to drive your SUV for UberXL, but you’ll be excluded from the premium service.
Fourth: Even if you’re comfortable only driving for the one service, the car still needs to kept in premium condition, or you’ll be excluded from UberSUV altogether.
Fifth: All cars be models from 2013 or newer, depending on the city.
Documentation and Licensing Requirements:
If you want to become an Uber SUV driver, there is a set of documents that Uber requires that’s particular to UberBlack/UberSUV. This has to do with UberSUV’s function as essentially a limousine service, as opposed to pure rideshare (like UberX):
- CDL or Chauffeur’s License (One per Driver)
- Vehicle Registration (One per Vehicle)
- Proof of Commercial Insurance (Must list your company as insured, One per Vehicle)
- Vehicle Inspection (One per Vehicle)
Also required are photos of your vehicle. Specifically:
- Exterior 1 (the front of the vehicle)
- Exterior 2 (the passenger side of vehicle)
- Exterior 3 (the driver side of the vehicle)
- Exterior 4 (the rear side of the vehicle, displaying license plates)
- Interior 1 – front seats
- Interior 2 – rear seats
Drive for Uber XL vs Uber SUV
While UberXL is casual (jeans, t-shirt, etc), UberSUV caters to a higher-end clientele, and thereby falls on the ‘chauffeur-side’ of the ride-share spectrum. If you drive for UberSUV; you’re expected to follow the same formal etiquette rules of UberBlack — in other words: dressing, and driving, professionally. Additionally, you must open doors; pay special attention to riders, and always be extremely polite and accommodating. If you’re comfortable with a service-oriented approach, UberSUV might be right for you.
For these reasons, UberSUV is a good fit for people who have already worked as a livery driver. This is especially applicable for those who have spent their time driving for corporate clients. The truth is, there’s nothing stopping prospective drivers from ‘double dipping’. That is to say; drive for UberX when it suits you, and then drive for UberSUV when you’re in the mood or it makes sense for your schedule.
Beyond the car you drive (which has to fit the requirements)… the choice is totally yours.