Uber has this month confirmed plans to roll-out its Uber Rewards loyalty programme in Australia and New Zealand, albeit it will be a few months before the general public to take advantage. Having already deploying its Uber Pro loyalty programme for driver-partners, select groups of local riders have already been invited to join a ‘soft launch’ trial of Uber Rewards, with increasing numbers to be added each month, then the programme formally opening to the public in 1Q 2020.
It has been a long time coming to this part of the world, but as Uber itself explains “while being first is nice, it is more important to be the most valuable so we’ve spent a lot of time building a platform that will provide tangible value on day one”.
So how will it work? Customers can earn points at home or overseas on rides with Uber and orders with Uber Eats. On Uber Eats and UberPool they will earn one point for every eligible dollar spent. On UberX, UberXL, Comfort and Assist they will earn two points per eligible dollar, while on Uber Premier users can earn triple points on the dollar.
Like most loyalty schemes, the more you spend the more you earn, and like the airline system Uber has membership tier levels that offer increasing benefits the higher you go (or more precisely, the more you spend!).
The basic tier is Blue and available to everyone enrolled in the programme. In Australia users can then graduate to Gold (1,200 points) and Platinum (4,000 points) before reaching the top level – Diamond (7,500 points). In New Zealand users graduate to Gold at 1,000 points and Platinum at 3,500 points before reaching the top level – Diamond at 5,500 points.
Unlike airline loyalty programmes that run for a year, sometimes 18 months or even two years, Uber Rewards will be calculated at six-month intervals based on the date of programme entry. Those joining the programme now in Nov-2019 will see their ‘membership period’ will run until May-2020; the next membership period extends from May-2020 to Nov-2020. When a member moves up from one tier to the next, their status will be valid until the end of their current membership period plus the next six months, confirms Uber.
Diamond members will immediately enjoy premium phone support, price confidence on a route of their choosing and a slew of other benefits, according to Uber. Details of the benefits are highlighted below, in the case of Australia.
As well as special benefits within the levels, customers who are Gold or above will also unlock special rewards for every 750 points customers earn (600 points in New Zealand).
The foundational Chosen Rewards will let members pick one of the following four benefits – 15% off orders with Uber Eats over a three day window; 15% off rides with Uber over a three day period; a donation to Paralympics Australia or New Zealand in the countdown to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games; or Qantas frequent flyers can earn 200 Qantas Points (Australia only).
This is only the beginning, over the coming months Uber Rewards plans to unlock even more offers for Uber users. The company says it is working hard “to build even more incredible everyday Uber Rewards opportunities from the most loved brands and retailers at home and internationally”.
The debut of Uber Rewards in these two markets continues Uber’s development in the South Pacific. Melbourne was the first and only city outside of the US to be unveiled as a testing ground for Uber Air, Sydney was part of the pioneering offering which welcomed public transit into the app, Perth launched UberPool and Uber is now increasing its footprint in regional Australia in locations like Tamworth, Wagga Wagga, Mackay, Shepparton and Bathurst.
Meanwhile, when Uber launched in Auckland in 2014, it changed the way people moved around the city. It has subsequently launched Uber Eats in several cities across the country, introduced its JUMP e-scooters to Wellington, and now offers Uber Rides in 14 New Zealand cities.