Cab aggregator Uber will reportedly launch a boat service in India’s commercial capital Mumbai. Named UberBOAT, the service has chosen the Gateway-Mandwa Jetty sector of Mumbai as its debut route.

The highlight of the speed boat service is reduced travel time, thanks to its high speed it only takes one-third of the time taken by traditional ferry services, Times of India noted.

Existing ferries take an hour or so to cover the distance between Gateway of India and Mandwa jetty. UberBOAT, on the other hand, will cover the distance in just over twenty minutes. Fixed fares operate in the beginning before it moves into Uber dynamic pricing later.

Mandwa jetty route is a busy section of the city's ferry service as people take boats to reach the area for traveling to Alibaug and Kihim beaches by road.

The service is expected to be formally launched by Mumbai Port Trust Chairman Sanjay Bhatia. 

“If successful, the UberBOAT service could be launched for other destinations, including Navi Mumbai, in near future,” an official from Mumbai Port Trust noted. 

For people of Mumbai, the new mode of water transport will be a big relief as it cuts down travel time as compared to jampacked roads and congested local trains. Obviously, this also helps the city dwellers to book boat rides on mobile as well.

Capacity and fare

The boat service can carry six to ten passengers at a time. Passengers can book single seats or the entire boat for the journey.

According to Times of India, Uber is tight-lipped on the launch plan except saying that “Mumbaikars will get an experience of a new mode of transport on the aggregator platform.”

An Uber official also called the new service a "game changer."

If the UberBOAT proves viable, more busy routes such as Nerul or Belapur to South Mumbai may become ripe for such services.

Uber making good money from India

Uber India is making good money from India. In 2018, it increased revenue 20 times at Rs 21.5 crore or $3.5 million in the last fiscal that ended March 2018, according to business intelligence forum Tofler

Uber considers India as a high potential market and is innovating products to expand the market. India has contributed 11 percent of the total trips of Uber worldwide. Uber’s food delivery service, UberEats is also doing well in India.