Uber launches charter service to hail a bus or van for group trips in South Florida

Damian Dovarganes/AP

Ride-share company Uber is teaming with US Coachways so people in South Florida can reserve vans or buses through Uber’s app for group transportation.

With the new Uber Charter service, Uber users can book rides for destinations in Miami and across the tri-county area for groups of six to 55 people. US Coachways will provide the vehicles, and the trips need to be reserved at least three days in advance of pickup. The cost will be based on group size, trip distance and the availability of vehicles.

“Miami is a very important market for us,” Uber South region spokesman Javi Correoso said, noting the firm opened an office downtown last year. “[Uber Charter] is a new offering and something that a lot of folks have asked about for some time now.”

Joseph Heap, US Coachways chief marketing officer, called it an “exciting time to be in the ground transportation industry” with the innovation and changes occurring.

The key difference between requesting a one-person ride on the Uber app and seeking Uber Charter service is the minimum of three days’ advance required for the reservation.

App users can order charter vehicles ranging from sprinter vans to buses for their group trips. US Coachways works with local transportation companies to vet and fill Uber Charter’s orders.

Besides Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties, Uber Charter is available in Orlando and Tampa. That means groups also can reserve charter service between South Florida and those two Florida cities.

In July, Uber Charter made its debut in Texas in Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston areas. Correoso said the group transportation service will expand in the coming months to other cities and states nationwide.