The hitch a ride app and the glitzy vacation town face off over taxi laws.
Though there have been rumors for weeks, the end has finally come for Uber drivers in Hamptons: the glitzy small down in New York has officially banned Uber drivers, as they violate a pre-existing taxi law. However, the crafty town didn't really ban them, as that might look bad for the town that makes all of its money in just three months. Instead, they have made it extremely difficult for drivers.
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According to Fortune, Uber sent out an email to its customers this week announcing that the East Hamptons now requires its drivers to have an office in the town in order to drive there. How many Uber drivers do you think have offices in one of the most expensive real estate areas in the country? Exactly.
So why is this a really big deal? It boils down to the fact that most New Yorkers (the primary population of the East Hamptons) don't have cars, access to cars, or even licenses that are valid. They rely almost entirely on public transportation and private cars, which means that putting them onto the road (if they do have a rarely-used license) could be extremely dangerous.
Uber has responded to the new law with sadness: “As a result riders like you will be unable to get reliable, safe rides in any part of East Hampton out to Montauk—effective immediately,” Uber said in the email.
They also responded to the new idea that drivers need to have offices: “which is impossible for our partners,” Uber said. In the same email, the company urged passengers to call the East Hampton town supervisor (whose phone number was included in the message) and “tell him you need Uber in East Hampton.”
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There is also economical problems with this law, because getting a taxi in the Hamptons, which is already difficult, can cost up to $100 for just a few miles. An Uber would cost much less, and would likely be much more plentiful.