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Uber offers Tampa Bay riders special flat rates to Gulf beaches

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

As Florida’s sizzling summer officially begins, Uber makes it easy for Tampa-area residents to cool off at the beach.

Starting this weekend, the ridesharing technology company is offering flat rates for UberX and UberXL from Downtown Tampa to the St. Pete Gulf beaches — $29 for an UberX and $49 for an UberXL.

Whether it’s for a long-planned vacation or a last minute trip to the Gulf, most of the region’s world-famous beaches are only about 30 minutes away, the perfect distance for the popular ridesharing service.

“So slip on your flip flops, grab your towel, and tap REQUEST,” says the Uber email announcement.

Since Tampa is also a destination for many domestic and international visitors, an inexpensive trip to the beach is always welcome – particularly for those riders who already use Uber in their hometowns.

Rates include Clearwater Beach, where parking is always scarce (or expensive). By sharing a ride to the beach, those rates become even more affordable.

The popularity of the San Francisco-based service is undeniable. According to the Uber blog, the service now operates in 285 cities, 57 countries on six continents. A recent survey found 162,000 active Uber drivers in the U.S. (giving at least four rides a month), quadruple the amount from one year ago. Of those 162,000 drivers, 40,000 gave their first ride in December 2014, making one in four Uber drivers new to the service.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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