Uber passengers will have to pay a premium for silence.
The ride hailing app debuted its “Quiet Mode” feature this week to put the driver on notice that they don’t want to chat. Uber UBER, +3.49% passengers will have to pay more for peace and quiet — the feature is only available on its higher-priced Uber Black and Uber Black SUV premium rides.
Passengers can select “quiet preferred,” “happy to chat” or “no preference” for Uber Black cars or Uber Black SUVs. Fares for these cars are typically 100% more expensive than Uber X, and nearly 200% more expensive than Uber Pool, the apps ride-sharing option.
An Uber ride from New York’s Upper East Side to Rockefeller Center in Midtown Manhattan costs up to $66.30 for a Black SUV or $44.52 for an Uber Black, the only options available for the quiet feature, according to a MarketWatch comparison. An UberPool costs $11.51.
The new feature is part of Uber’s new “Rider Preferences” features for an Uber Black or SUV. There’s also a “Bags” option that lets riders alert a driver that they have luggage, and a “Temperature” control that lets them request heat or air conditioning.
There’s one catch. Opting for a quiet car does not guarantee the driver will actually remain quiet during the trip. “It’s not mandatory,” Uber product manager Aydin Ghajar told TechCrunch. “The driver is an independent contractor. We’re just communicating the rider’s preference.”
(Uber did not immediately respond to a request for comment.)
Get a daily roundup of the top reads in personal finance delivered to your inbox. Subscribe to MarketWatch's free Personal Finance Daily newsletter. Sign up here.