Uber for Business, which was introduced in 2017, makes it easy for employees to separate business expenses from personal rides. Uber’s competitor Lyft offers a very similar service with Lyft Business. Tens of thousands of businesses use Uber for Business. Is ridesharing always a better alternative for business travel than renting a car?
Pro: Minimizes Expense Reports
When an employee uses Uber for Business, it requires an expense code specific to your business. This tracks your employee’s pickup location and destination, selected vehicle option, date and time of the trip’s start and end, and the trip duration.
All of this information is sent to you, the employer. Your employee doesn’t need to submit an expense report and you know exactly what your company is being charged for. You can also limit the times, locations and total cost that an employee’s expense code will cover in advance.
Pro: Avoids the Need to Drive
Ridesharing eliminates the need for your employee to drive while traveling for work. This is convenient in cities with confusing traffic patterns or very aggressive drivers. It can also help cut costs in international destinations, where your company may be responsible for providing a special driver’s license or additional insurance.
Con: Limits Mileage
The more miles you travel via a rideshare, the more expensive your ride is. For trips that involve a lot of travel between clients or manufacturing facilities, a rental car is likely more economical.
The opposite situation favors ridesharing. For example, if your employee is attending a conference and staying in the conference hotel, travel will be limited. An Uber ride to a dinner or two will be less costly than a rental car that isn’t utilized.
Con: Relies on Technology
Cell phones die and apps fail. You may also have valuable employees who are not confident using Uber. These potential downsides could outweigh the potential gains from using ridesharing apps like Uber for Business.