Uber Unveils Autonomous Deliveries, Charter Bus Reservations, Other New Features

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Uber on Monday (May 16) announced several new innovations it will roll out to enhance its ride-hailing core business, including autonomous deliveries and charter bus reservations, according to a blog post by CEO Dara Khosrowshahi.

The company has also launched Uber Travel in the U.S., allowing users to book hotel, flight and restaurant reservations in one place after connecting a Gmail account, earning 10% back in Uber Cash for each Reserve ride booked with Uber Travel. Uber said it plans to expand Uber Travel to Canada and the U.K., where the portal will include the ability to book trains, coaches and car rentals.

In addition, the Uber Charter feature will allow users to book a party bus, passenger van, coach bus and more with upfront pricing from the Uber app when it launches this summer across the U.S., according to the post.

The company is also launching Vouchers for Events, which helps users organize travel for guests of large events, including weddings and corporate functions. By using a unique event code, guests can determine their pickup and drop-off times, and hosts can determine how much they want to cover for each guest. Vouchers are also available for Uber Eats and through Uber for Business.

Additionally, Uber’s Comfort Electric option now allows riders to choose electric vehicles, including a Tesla or Polestar, when they book rides in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego and Dubai. The company said it also plans to add more cities.

Meanwhile, Uber is integrating Google Assistant into Uber Eats to allow for voice ordering starting this summer in English, and more languages will be added later. The company also announced that Uber Eats at Stadiums is available at several stadiums in the U.S., as well as at Roazhon Park in Rennes, France, with more global locations on the way.

Last week, Uber tapped Sarah-Marie Martin, an ex-Goldman Sachs banker, to be the head of its mergers and capital markets group.

Related: Uber Taps Former Goldman Exec Sarah-Marie Martin to Head M&A, Capital Markets

Martin is a 25-year veteran of Wall Street. She worked for five years at Goldman, covering alternative investment firms and private equity clients and had a brief time working as chief financial officer for baby food maker Yumi.