Uride will launch across smaller cities in B.C. by the end of the 2019, their CEO says. (Black Press Media)

New ride-hailing company to launch in smaller B.C. cities

The Thunder Bay-based company is currently looking for drivers

A new ride-hailing company is coming to B.C. communities left behind by the bigger players – but not Metro Vancouver.

Uride founder and CEO Cody Ruberto said the company has submitted an application to operate in all parts of the province, but will be focusing on smaller communities for now.

The Thunder Bay-based company is currently looking for drivers in Victoria, Nanaimo, Kamloops, Kelowna and Prince George.

“We’re keeping an eye on Metro Vancouver but we’re currently running ads in those cities,” Cody Ruberto said.

Ruberto said he got the idea when he saw people in his hometown of Thunder Bay get left behind by ride-hailing.

“I would see people stranded with no rides, sometimes in -30 C weather,” he told Black Press Media by phone Thursday.

“I really wanted to solve this problem for Thunder Bay.”

READ MORE: B.C. sets rules for ride hailing, same minimum fee as taxis

Uride proved successful in Thunder Bay and Ruberto said soon other smaller communities were reaching out. Currently, the company operates throughout Ontario and in Winnipeg. It’s also looking to start operating in Saskatchewan.

Ruberto said the company’s aim is to curb impaired driving, especially in smaller cities where public transit isn’t always sufficient and taxis remain expensive.

He said teamwork is the key to making ride-hailing work in the small communities that giants like Uber and Lyft have passed by.

“Our drivers actually know each other and they all talk,” Ruberto said.

“We warn them in advance whenever theres a big night coming up.”

Although Uber and Lyft have expressed disappointment with B.C.’s Class 4 licensing requirement for ride-hailing, Ruberto said he’s not worried.

“We trust whatever the government has set,” he said.

“Just from speaking to our driver recruitment team, it hasn’t been that much of an issue”

Ruberto said he hopes to have Uride up and running in B.C. before the end of the year.

READ MORE: New ride-hailing app says it will operate across B.C.

READ MORE: Transportation minister outlines ‘widespread concerns’ about ride-hailing in B.C.

READ MORE: Nine Vancouver-area taxi companies ask B.C. Supreme Court to quash ride-hailing rules


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

PROFILE: Stetski running for NDP in Kootenay-Columbia

Regional NDP candidate was first elected to federal office four years ago

Fernie kids triathlon 2019 a great success

James Snell - reporter@thefreepress.ca The ninth annual Fernie Kids Triathlon was a… Continue reading

City commissions another fire hall roof study

Fernie City Council has authorized staff to reallocate the existing budget from… Continue reading

Pride Festival just around the corner

The Fernie and Elk Valley Pride Festival is just around the corner,… Continue reading

Kootenay Learning Campus opens in Fernie

School District 5 celebrated the grand opening and ribbon cutting of the… Continue reading

VIDEO: ‘Thrones,’ ‘Fleabag’ top Emmys

Billy Porter makes history as first openly gay black man to win best drama-series acting Emmy

Avalanche workshop coming soon to Fernie

Submitted, EVSAW Fernie will play host to the second annual CIL Explosives… Continue reading

“Killer of neighbourhoods” petition circulates

James Snell - reporter@thefreepress.ca Several residents on 4th Avenue are circulating a… Continue reading

B.C. VIEWS: School officials join fact-free ‘climate strike’

Students, public get distorted picture of greenhouse gases

Judge rules cops did not coerce statement from B.C. man accused of assaulting sex worker

Defence wanted Vernon’s Curtis Sagmoen’s video interview with police deemed inadmissible

GRAPHIC: Tortured cat found with string around its neck in Kelowna alleyway

City crews have been contacted and are on the way to pick up the dead feline.

Firefighters may be needed for paramedic apartment access, experts say

Better coordination recommended in urban B.C. 9-1-1 calls

Fernie Fire Department celebrates FireSmart education

“The greatest safety is a neighbourhood that is FireSmart,” said Alan Westhaver.

Trails in Fernie’s Ridgemont area reopen

Fernie Trails Alliance urging trail users to abide by and obey closures still in place

Most Read