Uber Direct is a same-day delivery offering by Uber that allows delivery of essential items, including food and groceries, from select retailers. It is a contactless service.
Uber Technologies suffered a tremendous drop in ride-hailing requests during the global pandemic. This acted as a prompt for the company to launch a new service to further economic opportunities for Uber driver-partners. The program is designed to assist businesses in meeting growing consumer demand for the delivery of essential packages such as medication, home supplies, etc.
What is the basic framework of Uber Direct?
Businesses can leverage Uber Direct to move goods across their supply chain and into the hands of their customers, thanks to the company’s network of driver-partners.
As for its working, the service is similar to UberX and/or UberPOOL. You can place the order through the Uber application. Once you confirm the necessary addresses, an available driver who is logged in to the Uber Direct platform will be assigned your order. The driver, then, will proceed to pick up the package and confirm the collection. The driver will deliver it to the drop-off location while ensuring a contactless experience.
How to place an order via Uber Direct?
Just like Uber Eats or Uber’s ride-sharing services, the process to place an order via Uber Direct is fairly identical.
- Visit the Uber application
- Locate and tap the “Uber Direct” tab
- You will land on a list of available retailers you can order from
- Go through the list of items being offered by the selected retailer
- Select your preferences and finalize the order by selecting the mode of payment
How is Uber Direct different from Uber Connect?
Uber Direct and Uber Connect are both package delivery services by the company. Both offer same-day, contactless delivery of items. However, the difference in both the offerings is that one is a retail delivery solution while the other has a peer-to-peer nature.
With Direct, you can order items from a local retailer. This service is similar to Uber Eats in its foundation but instead of food and groceries, you can get several other items like medicines delivered to you.
On the contrary, Uber Connect is for personal package deliveries. You can send personal packages such as birthday gifts or care packages to a destination of your choice. In addition, you can request delivery as a “recipient” from a selected sender. One of the many use cases of the service includes swift delivery of items you have sold online to your customer.
What items can I order via this service?
Unlike Connect, Uber Direct has no specific parcel size or weight limitation as such. Below is a list of some packages that you can order via the service:
- Over-the-counter (OTC) medications
- Small home appliances and equipment
- Auto parts
- Pet supplies
- Alcohol delivery
- Toys and games
- Clothing and accessories
Where is the service available?
Uber piloted the service in three locations, to begin with, including New York, Australia, and Portugal.
In partnership with Cabinet (an online NYC pharmacy), Uber delivered OTC medications to start the project in the city. As for Australia, Greencross became Uber’s first partner retailer for the delivery of pet supplies. Moreover, the company started the delivery of medications in South Africa. You can visit the official company website or application to check program availability in your city.