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ViaVan: Mercedes-Benz launches Uber competitor in London

ViaVan: Mercedes-Benz launches Uber competitor in London
ViaVan: Mercedes-Benz launches Uber competitor in London

Mercedes-Benz launches Uber competitor in London

Ride sharing is certainly all the rage these days, and despite some controversy, it seems like a trend that is here to stay.  Most recently, yet another company has decided to throw their hat into the ring by launching their very own version.  Mercedes-Benzdebuted their join effort with Via in London Zones 1 and 2 of the city.  Unlike Uber, the ViaVans don't come directly to you, but usually pick-up locations are just a short walk away.  The cost is extremely affordable with rides to and from Zone 1 roughly $4 for a limited time, and while you might find a more cost-efficient option in utilizing the bus, the convenience of the ViaVan is definitely a step up from public transit.

Although ViaVan is not quite as convenient of traditional taxi services and ridesharing models, they hope to serve as a worthy competitor to the popular rideshare companies in operation.  Interestingly enough, Transport of London suspended the license of Uber, the most widely known such service, at the end of 2017.  Uber immediately filed an appeal, and because the case won't be heard until sometime this year, they were able to immediately resume operation and have continued to operate as usual in the interim.  Of course, some say it is a risky move to introduce ViaVan into a city so leery of ride share operations.  Chief executive of ViaVan, Chris Snyder, disagrees and states he feels confident the company will succeed and assures naysayers that the service is properly licensed and successfully completed the necessary processes with London Transport.  ViaVan also boasts a higher commission rate for their drivers which Snyder feels will set them apart from the competition.

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This is notable because n the brief history of ride sharing popularity, a  comfortable living wage has been difficult to achieve, even for drivers who operate full time hours.  ViaVan hopes to provide adequate wages and claims to take the lowest cut of any comparable service currently operating in London.

At this point, with ViaVan only operating in Zones 1 and 2, it definitely does not have the range of competitors which can cover the whole city since they are designed more for individual riders, and less like a carpool service.  Of course, the company intends to expand service areas over time, depending on the anticipated success of the sample area.  Previously operating only in Amsterdam, ViaVan will be making its first break into the UK market upon beginning service in London.

Dubbed “ride-pooling,” ViaVan hopes to corner a niche market that combines traditional public transportation with the convenience of ride-sharing.  The cost will be slightly more expensive than public transit, but riders won't fall victim to the extreme inconvenience of multiple stops and rides to destinations taking much longer than necessary.  It will also allow riders to be picked up and dropped off at more convenient locations, as opposed to the strict and inflexible routes of public transportation.

A1 Auto Transport loves hearing about these new and innovative ways to increase consumer convenience while lowering the carbon footprint all over the world, so we will continue to follow the ViaVan saga and hope that they are able to succeed with their debut in London.

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Amanda Williams is a mother, an author, and entrepreneur. Her pastimes include the San Diego Padres, anything and everything Disney related, reading for pleasure, running for fun, family trips to Sea World, the San Diego Zoo, and Disneyland, and of course, spending quality time with her two beautiful daughters. 

Amanda is uniquely qualified to write on all things auto transport, working in the industry as a sales agent for over 10 years and also shipping cars herself on multiple occasions, all of which allowed her to learn the industry from both sides. Amanda also has a comprehensive knowledge of vehicles due to a budding passion and thirst for knowing all things automotive. 

Amanda was born and raised in the small town of Santa Cruz, California, but moved to San Diego at age 17 to pursue a degree in psychology at San Diego State University. She graduated in just 3 short years with a Bachelor's in Psychology with a Minor in Religious Studies, but chose instead to pursue a career in finance, working at multiple financial institutions before discovering her true passion for writing.

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It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Due to the nature of my work, I must relocate every couple of years to where my company needs me. Because of this, I’ve tested several moving and auto transport companies over the years.

And my choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.

The only time my shipment was delayed was during winter when a snowstorm closed down all the major roads. And they still found an alternative and got my car delivered before roads got unstuck.

When I moved to West Virginia, they picked up my car the very day I called them. I like to think they take special care of me considering all the business I’ve sent them. I’ll continue to support A1 Auto Transport. It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!

I considered selling my car when I moved to Washington. It was old and rusty, but I grew attached to it. So, I called a couple companies to transport it to my new home, but they both fell through.

The first one couldn’t decide on a schedule. He would constantly change the pickup date till I got frustrated and canceled. The second was insufferable, very rude on the phone, even worse in person.

They started picking a part my car asking me why I still have it. If that’s their opinion of my vehicle, how can I trust they’ll take care of it? If something happened midway, why wouldn’t they just blame it on the car instead of paying up?

So, I cancelled this company as well and turned to A1 Auto Transport. From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!

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I called and got things rolling. I was very pleased with the driver. He followed standard procedure and represented his company well. Can’t remember his name, but props to him!

The car arrived in Washington 6 days later in excellent condition. From what I understand, the transport was delayed a bit by a storm, but since the time window was 4-6 days from the beginning, I don’t really care. You have my full support and recommendation!

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There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them.

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We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.

We were abroad during the transport, so the transport was a bit tricky. The driver had to pick it up from storage on short notice and get it to its destination within at most 10 days. I was happy to note it arrived sooner. We got it 3 days early, right when we got home to pick it up. It made getting around way easier. Awesome service!

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