Your Next Uber Could Be The Bus
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Your Next Uber Could Be The Bus

The cost of rides might be pushing some to more economical transportation.

By Laura Forman
Mon, May 23, 2022Grey Clock 2 min

People are thinking twice before opening that ride-share app on their smartphones.

The practice isn’t going anywhere, but the slow pace at which ride volumes have recovered from their pandemic depths is the latest sign the industry might not become as pervasive as once hoped. As dreams of world domination fade and investors watch the bottom line, the cost of that ride might be pushing some potential customers to more economical forms of transportation.

Lately, market leader Uber Technologies has moved beyond the service that made its name a verb. According to its 2022 investor day deck, Uber is in 72 countries. It added Eats to deliver food, and then expanded that to include convenience, alcohol, diapers and much more. It is now adding taxi partnerships and travel, among other things. Soon, you will be able to hail your own private party bus.

These additions are outwardly pitched as a way for Uber to aggressively build a super app from a position of strength. They are arguably just as defensive. If investors once wanted quantity, they now want quality. As Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi wrote recently in an internal email: “In times of uncertainty, investors look for safety…we need to show them the money.”

The economics of ride-hailing have changed. Platforms like Uber and Lyft for years grew through subsidizing the cost of rides to win market share from other forms of transportation, as well as from one another. Between 2016 and 2021, Uber burned an average of nearly $3 billion annually.

But with investors now focused on pocketing cash rather than splashing it around, broad subsidies are no longer a winning strategy. And that discipline comes at a time of rising costs. Labour laws, competition and a surge in vehicle and pump prices have meant ride-share drivers need to be paid more. The combination of those costs and investors’ demands for profit and cash flow means postpandemic ride-hailing may never be as affordable as it used to be.

Nationally, average ride-hailing pricing in April was already up nearly 39% from where it was at the same time in 2019, YipitData shows. Some of that has to do with longer rides consumers are now taking. But even on a per kilometre basis, pricing was up over 27%. In sprawling Phoenix and Atlanta, per mile pricing for Uber and Lyft combined was up around 40% and 50% on average, respectively.

The pandemic may be waning, spurring more tourist and commuting demand, but consumers are likely to consider cheaper options amid rising rates and prices for other goods and services. And pricing could get even richer. Facing a driver shortage, Lyft might need to compensate with higher rider rates to compete. Meanwhile, if Uber continues to push for aggressive growth in food delivery and other noncore businesses, then someone has to shoulder that tab.

Ride hailers set out to free us from car ownership and provide us with more convenience and comfort than other available transportation options. What if the future of ride-share is…the bus?

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The waterfront residence is one of Port Stephens’ finest homes.

By Kanebridge News
Fri, Aug 12, 2022 2 min

In the coastal township of Salamander Bay — nearby to Port Stephens — comes a unique home crafted to take full advantage of unbroken ocean vistas across three levels.

With one-of-a-kind flair, the stunning 5-bedroom, 3-bathroom, 3-car garage home of 52 Randall Drive Salamander Bay is nestled on a private 577sqm plot, optimised through intelligent design to take advantage of the Port Stephens landscape and lifestyle.

Within the home sees the typically coastal textures of natural oak floor and timber feature walls take hold while stone and tiled adornments add layers of luxury.

The open plan living, kitchen and dining areas incorporate a fireplace and near floor-to-ceiling glass that opens to create a seamless indoor-to-outdoor dining and entertaining space on the home’s top floor.

The heart of this area is the kitchen, centred around a marble-topped island, state-of-the-art European appliances and an attached bar area, with built-in refrigeration, accompanied by a butler’s pantry.

Also here comes a grand outdoor spa, central to the balcony, while another outdoor entertaining area with a pizza oven is found on the middle floor.

Downstairs once again comes a second living space replete with the perfect wine cellar — cooled by the natural rock foundation of the home — offering an array of entertaining options

Of the home’s accommodation comes a private and luxurious master retreat with expansive ocean views, a walk-in wardrobe and an ensuite, here, speckled with grey terrazzo tiling and timber joinery vanities.  A further four bedrooms are found throughout the home along with two family bathrooms rounding out the offering.

Less than a five-minute walk from nearby amenities of shops, restaurants, cafes and beaches the home offers the best of the Port Stephens area.

The listing is with PRD Port Stephens’ Dane Queenan (+61 412 351 819) and Erin Sharp (+61 499 912 311) and is heading to auction; prd.com.au