Uber expanding to southwest Ontario, offering 4 free rides until Sunday

TORONTO – Residents in several southwestern Ontario communities can start using Uber on Thursday, and the ride-hailing service is offering them free rides to try it out.

Uber Canada says its uberX service will be available in London, Waterloo Region, Hamilton and Guelph, and customers can ride up to four times for free until Sunday.

The number of Canadian communities offering the service is now more than 25, including Ottawa, Edmonton, Montreal and Toronto.

Uber connects riders and drivers using their own vehicles through a smartphone app, and says its prices are up to 25 per cent less than a taxi.

Cabbies have been up in arms about Uber and not all communities have embraced the service.

The City of Toronto recently lost a court case against Uber when a judge ruled there was no evidence the company was operating as a taxi broker or that it breached city bylaws.

Uber says the expansion will make the service available to more than 1.4 million Ontarians.

“By opening these markets, Uber stands to create more than 2,400 driver partner jobs in the region over the next year,” said Ian Black, general manager of Uber Canada.