What is UberXL?
As Uber expands to cover a growing range of markets, it makes perfect sense that it would also have to e x p a n d its cars… literally. Enter UberXL — Uber’s solution to the issue of large passenger groups.
UberXL is a larger capacity, SUV/minivan version of UberX. It is comparable to the other rideshare company’s service, Lyft Plus.
Like UberX, UberXL is a relatively low-cost service, but it’s also able to carry large parties (6 passenger seats) from point A to B.
- An UberXL vehicle can seat up to six passengers.
- UberXL is far less expensive than UberSUV (UberSUV is UberXL’s high-end ‘premium’ sister-service).
Uber XL Vehicles
If you request an UberXL vehicle, you’ll typically be picked up in one of these vehicles, or something comparable:
- Honda pilot
- Toyota Sienna
- Chevrolet Traverse
- Dodge Durango
- Dodge Grand
- Honda Odyssey
- Nissan Quest
- Kia Sedona
- Mitsubishi Outlander
- Dodge Caravan
How does it work?
As with all other Uber services, you simply request UberXL through the mobile Uber App.
Uber matches passengers with nearby UberXL drivers. Uber then uses your GPS coordinates to send an SUV/mini-van to your group for immediate pick-up.
All drivers are operating either an SUV, or a mini-van.
Like UberX, most UberXL drivers are independent, part-time workers, who do not possess commercial licenses or have long-term experience in the transportation industry.
Why use Uber XL?
If you’re traveling in a large group, UberX won’t always suit your needs.
It’s true that — on very rare occasions — UberX drivers will break Uber’s strict max-passenger rules (i.e., ‘no more than four passengers allowed ’) and accommodate an entire six-person-group in an UberX vehicle.
Unfortunately, having more than four passengers in an UberX vehicle is simply not legal. If a car isn’t licensed (or built) to carry six people, it’s really not supposed to be used as a ‘large group’ transportation car.
UberXL Seating Capacity
That’s where Uber XL comes in. It’s a special service specifically for groups of five or more.
- Uber XL vehicles can seat up to 6 passengers
Just like shirts and popcorn, the ‘XL’ stands for ‘extra large’ (and just like everything else that has an ‘XL’ option — it costs more).
How much more expensive is UberXL?
Uber offers different prices for its XL services in different cities, but the bottom line is: your base fare (the cost of actually hailing the ride) is typically going to range from 3-$5.
$3 is generally at the low end — in most American cities, UberXL hovers around $3.50 or $4.
The minimum fare (the smallest amount it could possibly cost to take the ride) ranges from $7-$12, and $7 is most common. The only major exception is Indianapolis, where the minimum fare is far lower: $3.85.
The cost of a trip is calculated using a standard formula:
Base Fare + Per-Minute Fare + Per-Mile Fare + ‘Safe Ride Fee’
As above, a standard fee is charged at the beginning of an Uber XL ride (the fee varies between cities — $3 in Los Angeles, but $4.50 in New York City).
Cost Per Minute.
Uber XL’s per-minute cost also varies between cities (for instance, CPM is $0.35 in Los Angeles, $0.30 in New Jersey, $0.60 in New York).
Cost Per Mile
Per-Minute costs differ greatly ($1.85 in Los Angeles, $3.25 in New York, $2 in New Jersey)
The ‘minimum fare’ cost of using Uber’s XL service also varies widely between cities ($7 in Los Angeles, $12 in New York).
Safe Ride Fee
Uber’s SafeRide fee adds a flat $1.00 to your ride.
A frequent question we receive from potential XL customers is: ‘’Can I bring my dog/cat along for my UberXL ride?’’
The answer is:
Most rideshare drivers are fine with accommodating animals — specifically cats and small dogs — but the decision is theirs alone.
This is why it’s smart to call your driver and double-check whether you’re allowed to bring Fido the Dog or Felix the Cat with you on your ride.
When your ride is officially confirmed on your smartphone’s Uber App, you’ll receive your driver’s details and phone number — just give them a call and check!
If your driver does allow your pet to tag along inside the vehicle — which they normally will — it is highly recommended that you bring your pet in a carrying-case, to prevent it from getting loose while traveling from point A to point B.
A final note on animals
All rideshare drivers (and professional drivers, in general) are required by federal law to accommodate service animals (the animals must be registered service animals).
If you encounter any problems bringing along a service animal on your trip, do not hesitate to reach out to Uber customer service to remedy the problem.
What are the benefits of being an UberXL driver?
If you’re an Uber driver (or if you want to become one), and if you have the appropriate vehicle (see list above), it might be worth your while to consider driving for UberXL.
UberXL drivers earn about 40% more revenue-per-trip than standard UberX drivers.
This is because UberXL is a more expensive service than UberX. In fact, it usually works out to cost about 50% more overall, compared to a regular UberX trip.
Other insights for XL drivers
If you’re an XL driver, it’s worth noting — the most in-demand times for XL are usually on weekends, when large groups are traveling to sports games, conferences, or special events.
If you’re working in a metropolitan area between 5pm and 3am, be prepared for high-volume traffic.
In fact, if you want to increase your revenue substantially, it’s possible to switch your driver app to accept only UberXL fares (as opposed to both X and XL, which is the default setting).
In fact, it really makes sense (in some cases) to turn off your UberX requests completely. Not only because you’ll be receiving lower fares, but because — when you are actively competing an UberX trip — you are not allowed to view/accept other incoming UberXL fares.
In other words: you’re possibly missing out on increasing your ride income by also taking UberX fares (when you could actually be receiving a constant stream of UberXL trips).
Just tap the UberXL ONLY option inside your Uber Account, to ensure that you’re receiving only XL requests during in-demand hours.