Uber launches uberAssist service for disabled passengers in London

Following Uber's launch of its new service uberASSIST in July, the taxi app has announced that it has trained more than 100 drivers in London for the program in preparation for its UK launch.

To use the service, passengers simply need to enter the code 'ASSISTUK' into the Uber app’s promotion screen, which will alert drivers who are trained for the program to pick them up. The assigned driver will then call the passenger ahead of the actual arrival at the pick-up point.

To allow eligibility or the program, drivers will have to have completed a disability equality course from Transport For All and Inclusion London, which will give them the know-how in assisting seniors and passengers with wheelchairs, walking frames and scooters, blind users, and those with other physical challenges.

Around 5 to 10 per cent of the total driver count in London have been trained to take part in the new service.

Uber has based the new service on results from research saying that physically-challenged passengers are more likely to use taxis or minicabs, but are often overcharged. The transport startup said that the service, which will begin in the UK starting 3pm on Tuesday, will cost the same as a normal uberX ride.

Moving forward, Uber said it plans to introduce additional vehicles to the Uber platform that are wheelchair-accessible.