Uber Mobility Trial

February 2, 2017 / Auckland

Uber will be trialling a mobility scheme in January-April 2017 in Wellington and Auckland. This blogpost outlines the details about the why and the what of the scheme.

This trial is being run by Uber and is not connected with the Total Mobility Schemes in Auckland or Wellington.


Uber is a smartphone app that lets you get a safe, reliable, affordable ride in minutes. It has been operating in Wellington and Auckland for the last 18 and 24 months respectively and has upwards of 2000 active driver-partners. Rides with Uber are typically up to 40% cheaper than other point to point transport options in Wellington and Auckland. For more information on how the Uber app works, please see this video.

Two products are available – UberX and UberASSIST. UberX is the standard ride-sharing product, and is similar to other point to point transport options such as taxi. The UberASSIST product provides additional assistance to people who are limited in their mobility (ie. scooters, walking frames, utilising fold up wheelchairs) as the driver-partners have all received additional training from Be.Accessible.

If you would like more information on Uber and it’s safety processes, please see here.

The Total Mobility scheme assists eligible people with a permanent disability or impairment to access appropriate transport to enhance their community participation. This assistance is provided in the form of subsidised door to door transport services wherever scheme transport providers operate.

With the current council-funded scheme, eligible customers present their Total Mobility smart card to access a 50% discount on eligible door-to-door transport, up to a maximum of $40 subsidy per trip.

Uber has not been active in Total Mobility schemes to date. With upcoming regulatory changes, and potential accreditation for the scheme with councils, this trial for riders with accessibility needs is to gather feedback on our products and how we can improve them.


The details are as follows:

– The mobility trial will run for two months for each participant, running starting in January or February, 2017 in Auckland or Wellington.

– Participants will get 50% off trips up to a maximum of $40, up up to a total value of $500 per month during the trial.

– The promo code will be automatically applied to participants accounts.

– There is the hope that they will utilise Uber during the trial period as much as they would like in order to develop a good understanding of the parts of Uber that work well for their needs and those that need improvement.

– Training/phonecalls on getting Uber set up on their app will be available if necessary.

– Participants will be asked to complete a short survey at the end of the first month and again at the end of the trial. This will be in written format or can be done over the phone. It will cover their experience, and what Uber can do to improve the offering.


Am I eligible?

  • You need to be referred by a participating partner organisation (CCS Disability Action, Blind Citizens NZ, Be.Accessible).
  • have an email and mobile phone number
  • have a recent smartphone (iPhone 5 or later, Android less than 2 years old)
  • have a credit card/debit card
  • Either:
    • currently part of the total mobility scheme, or:
    • mobility-limited and interested in using Uber.
  • live within the red or orange areas in the map below.

I don’t have an Uber account currently. Can I still participate in the trial?

Yes – but you will need an Uber account in order to be able to participate. This trial is also open to people who already know and use Uber.

Can I get assistance setting up my Uber account?

If you need assistance setting up your account we can provide support in three ways:

  1. Please click on this guide that takes you through how to set up the Uber application. Guide here.
  2. Contact mobility trial coordinator on to organise a time to attend our office in Wellington (176 Tory Street) or Auckland (1 Kenwyn Street, Parnell) to have one of our Expert’s run you through the setup of the rider application.
  3. Please contact our mobility trial coordinator on to set up a time to run you through getting set up over the phone.

How much is the offer?

The offer is 50% of the fare, up to a maximum of $40. If the total fare is more than $80, the client must pay any additional cost. This will be charged to your registered credit or debit card. Uber is generally up to 40% cheaper than a taxi so any trip over $80 would likely be a very long trip.

How will I get the promotion? Do I need a card like with Total Mobility?

Once you have set up an Uber account (which we can help you with over the phone or in person in our offices), Uber will update your account to have the offer on trips automatically apply a promo code to your account. Once this has been added, no further action is required by you – all trips you take from your account will automatically receive the discount till the end of the trial.

Are wheelchair accessible vans covered?

No. There are no wheelchair accessible vans currently available with Uber in New Zealand.

Can I use the promotion outside the Wellington or Auckland regions?

Yes, the promotion will be valid throughout New Zealand. UberASSIST and UberX is available in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, and this promotion will work in these other cities should you travel to them.

Can my caregiver use my account?

No, only participants in the mobility trial can use the services. The caregiver may travel with the participant but may not use the participants’s account for their own travel.

Can I travel with a companion?

Yes, however as with the Total Mobility scheme, the participant must remain in the vehicle for the entire duration that your companion travels.