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Virgin Trains launches new partnership with Uber to encourage people to leave their cars at home

Press Release   •   May 30, 2018 00:01 BST

This partnership with Uber is part of Virgin Trains’ ambition to provide customers with a smooth and seamless journey from door-to-door, encouraging more people to leave their own cars at home.
  • Partnership will allow passengers to enjoy more convenient door-to-door journeys in cities across the UK
  • The initial phase offers customers the option to receive an SMS reminder with a link to book an Uber trip to the station and at the end of their Virgin Trains journey*
  • This is first step towards a fully integrated and seamless booking experience

EMBARGOED: 00.01 Wednesday 30th May 2018:Virgin Trains is today launching a new partnership with Uber to enable passengers to easily request a ride to the station and on arrival at their destination.

This partnership with Uber is part of Virgin Trains’ ambition to provide customers with a smooth and seamless journey from door-to-door, encouraging more people to leave their own cars at home.

From today, customers buying their train ticket on the Virgin Trains website will have the option to receive an SMS reminder with a link to book an Uber trip to the station and at the end of their Virgin Trains journey*. There will be a two-week testing period to allow for refining and optimising the service through customer feedback.

This marks the beginning of broader plans to continue optimising passenger journeys and improving customer satisfaction before, during, and after they travel.

Passengers who select this option will be eligible for 50% off their first Uber journey up to a maximum value of £10**. This will initially be available for customers travelling either from London Euston to Birmingham New Street or from Birmingham New Street to London Euston, with roll-out across other Virgin Trains stations on the West Coast in the coming months ***.

This builds on other Virgin Trains innovations and industry firsts such as the ability to buy tickets via Amazon Alexa, mobile ticketing, automatic compensation for delaysand the free on-demand entertainment BEAM.

Sarah Copley, Executive Director, Commercial at Virgin Trains,said: “We know that tackling the first and final mile is critical to opening up rail travel to new customers. Our exciting new partnership with Uber is the next step in making this end to end journey easy and seamless for customers.”

Fred Jones, Head of Cities at Uber, commented: “In order to make it easy to leave your own car at home, we want door-to-door experiences to be as seamless and convenient as possible. This partnership with Virgin Train is an exciting first step towards offering customers an easy way to combine train and car travel at the touch of a button.”

ENDS

Notes to Editors

*Dependent on availability of Uber driver partners in departure / arrival station(s). Only applies to outbound journey and not return leg.

** The promotion is only available for individuals that sign-up for a new rider account with Uber via [the promo code or link] provided to the intended recipient. Standard terms and conditions will apply.

*** Virgin Trains’ partnership with Uber plans to roll out at locations including Birmingham International, Glasgow Central, Milton Keynes Central, London Euston, Manchester Piccadilly, Edinburgh Waverley and Edinburgh Haymarket.

For more information, please contact:

Virgin Trains Press Office press.desk@virgintrains.co.uk 0845 000 3333

About Uber

Uber is a smartphone app that enables users to book a car with a licensed driver at the touch of a button and is today available in more than 40 towns and cities across the UK.

In order to use the Uber app in the UK, drivers must be licensed for private-hire by the local authority, which includes an enhanced background-check (DBS) - the same process which black cab drivers go through.

For more information contact Uber’s UK & Ireland press team on uki-comms@uber.com

About Virgin Trains

Stagecoach and Virgin are working in partnership to operate the West Coast and East Coast inter-city routes under the Virgin Trains brand. Together, they are on track to revolutionise rail travel across the UK.

The combined network connects some of the nation’s most iconic destinations including Glasgow, Liverpool, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Leeds, York and London.

Virgin Trains is committed to delivering a high speed, high frequency service, offering shorter journey times, more comfortable travel and excellent customer service. Customers consistently rate Virgin Trains the top long-distance rail franchise operators in the National Rail Passenger Survey (NRPS) commissioned by industry watchdog, Transport Focus.

Virgin Trains is operating the East Coast route until June 24, 2018 after taking over the business in March 2015. In that time, we have invested £75m to create a more personalised travel experience, including over £40m in our existing fleet. Customers can now benefit from 48 additional services between Edinburgh and London every week, and an extra 22 Saturday services between Leeds and London – a total of 1.74 million additional seats since May 2015.

The West Coast route has a proud record of challenging the status quo - from introducing tilting Pendolino trains, to a pioneering automated delay repay scheme and becoming the first franchised rail operator to offer m-Tickets for all ticket types.

Working together, the partnership railway of the public and private sectors has published a long-term plan, called In Partnership for Britain’s Prosperity, to change and improve Britain’s railway. The plan will secure almost £85bn of additional economic benefits to the country whilst enabling further investment and improvement, and contains four commitments which will see rail companies: strengthen our economic contribution to the country; improve customers’ satisfaction; boost the communities we serve; and, create more and better jobs in rail. For more information go to Britain Runs on Rail.

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Press Office: 0845 000 3333.