Uber launches in Birmingham just in time for New Years Eve

Local News

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — It’s official–the City of Birmingham has issued Uber its business license.

This comes after the Birmingham City Council announced they would allow Uber under a 6-month trial and allowed residents to apply to be Uber drivers.

Uber was up and running on Tuesday a little before 4 p.m., and just in time for the Birmingham Bowl and New Years Eve festivities later this week.

When the app went live, WIAT 42 News reporter Jamie Ostroff requested a ride from the studio on Red Mountain, to Uptown in Birmingham.

The driver arrived in less than 10 minutes, and the fare cost $14.29. Passengers cannot tip Uber drivers.

The driver, who asked not to be identified, said she was a stay-at-home mother who wanted a part-time job where she could work on her own terms.

She said her background check was relatively simple, and that she planned only to pick up passengers closer to her home.

“It’s just something to do and make a little bit of extra money, and something just to have your own,” the driver said, pointing out that she can set her own hours and choose not to give a ride for any reason.

Tom Maguire, General Manager for Uber in Alabama released a statement saying:“Residents of Birmingham have been eager to get expanded access to safe, reliable transportation options and the economic opportunities that Uber brings to the community. We are thrilled to finally be able to start operating here, and I want to personally thank city officials for all their hard work and support to make this happen.” 

Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News

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