With looming BART strike, Uber offers boat-to-work option

After last month’s BART strike turned out to be a boon for ride-sharing services, Uber is planning to make a splash during the second impending walkout.

Uber, the hire-a-car app company in San Francisco, on Monday will add boats to its fleet of vehicles, offering for one day only a ride across the bay so commuters can avert the clogged roadways during what expects to be day one of the BART strike.

Starting at 6:15 a.m. Monday, commuters can use the Uber app to request a ride on a boat, which will be provided by Boatbound, a San Francisco-based online boat rental marketplace. Boats will ferry people from the Jack London Square docks in Oakland, leaving between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m., to Pier 3 in San Francisco. The $30 one-way trip includes a ride in an UberX — the company’s fleet of hybrid and mid-size cars — from the passenger’s home to the docks.

Boats will depart San Francisco between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., and commuters can also catch an Uber ride from their office to the pier.

Whether or not the strike happens, Uber will have at least four boats running on Monday, according to a spokeswoman.

She said the boat rides include food and drinks, but passengers should bring their own warm clothes. The vessels will likely be a mix of powerboats and sailboats, making for a wet and chilly ride. And don’t plan a tight schedule — rides can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and a half.

Photo courtesy blog.uber.com
Heather Somerville Heather Somerville (210 Posts)

Heather Somerville is a business reporter covering venture capital and startups for the Bay Area News Group.