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UberX vs. Uber Black

Compare pricing, drivers, safety, car types and more.

UberX is Uber’s most economical ride, offering safe, comfortable cars that will get you where you need to go. But if you want to travel in style, Uber Black offers a luxury experience in newer, fancier cars.

Before calling your next ride, review our comparison of UberX vs. Uber Black to arrive on time without blowing your budget.

UberX vs. Uber Black

FeatureUberXUber Black
CostCheaperPricier — almost double the cost of an UberX
Preferences You cannot dictate your preferences through the app.Use the app to indicate your preferred temperature, whether or not you need help with luggage and whether or not you want to have a conversation.
ReservationsYou can’t reserve a car in advance, which means you may have to pay surge pricing.Reserve a car in advance, and lock in the price ahead of time so you won’t have to pay for surge pricing.
Airport The driver must drop you off or pick you up in the designated Uber zone — which is sometimes a shuttle ride away from the terminal.The driver can offer curbside pickup at the terminal.
DriversLicensed driversProfessional, commercially insured drivers
SafetyAll drivers must pass a background test.All drivers must pass a standard background test and a more extensive background test for the commercial license, which usually includes educational classes and a health screening.
Car type
  • Must be 10 years old or newer in most cities (in LA, Orange County and San Francisco they can be up to 15 years old)
  • Hundreds of car models from over 40 manufacturers are approved as UberX vehicles, including popular models like:
    • Chevy Impala
    • Chrysler 200 and 300
    • Ford Focus
    • Honda Accord
    • Mazda3 and 6
    • Nissan Sentra
    • Toyota Camry
    • Volkswagen Passat
  • Must be 5 years old or newer
  • All black interior, all black exterior
  • Only luxury cars are approved. Exact cars can vary by city but include popular models like:
    • Audi A8
    • BMW 7 Series
    • Cadillac CT6
    • Lexus GS
    • Lincoln Continental
    • Maserati Quattroporte
    • Mercedes-Benz S-Class
    • Tesla Model S
    • Volvo S90
Minimum driver ratingVaries by location4.85 stars
Car interiorsAnyLeather or vegan leather
Passengers 44 — or 6, if you choose Black SUV
Waiting feeCharged after 2 minutesCharged after 5 minutes — or 2 minutes at the airport
Cancellation fees Charged after 5 minutesCharged after 15 minutes in most cases — but 5 minutes at the airport
Support Contact Uber’s support team by sending a message through the appTalk to a live customer support rep on the phone
Availability
  • All 50 states and most cities — though there are some rural areas that won’t have a nearby driver.
Only available in select areas, including:

    • Atlanta
    • Baltimore
    • Boston
    • Charlotte
    • Chicago
    • Cincinnati
    • Cleveland
    • Columbus
    • Dallas
    • Detroit
    • Denver
    • Houston
    • Jacksonville
    • Los Angeles
    • Milwaukee
    • Minneapolis
  • Nashville
  • New Jersey
  • New Orleans
  • New York City
  • Orange County
  • Palm Springs
  • Philadelphia
  • Phoenix
  • The Rockies
  • Sacramento
  • San Diego
  • San Francisco
  • Santa Barbara
  • Seattle
  • St. Louis
  • Toronto
  • Ventura
  • Washington DC

 

What is UberX?

UberX is an on-demand, private ride service for one to four people with the lowest fares of any private Uber ride service. It uses modern, comfortable sedan vehicles and drivers with at least one year of driving experience who have passed a background test.

What is Uber Black?

Uber Black offers private luxury rides in high-end cars that are black on the interior and exterior. Drivers are commercially insured, which often means they have experience as professional drivers. With Uber Black, you can set ride preferences in the app, like your preferred temperature, whether you need help with luggage and whether you want to chat with your driver or enjoy a quiet ride.

Which should I choose?

UberX rides are perfectly adequate when you want to get from point A to point B and don’t care about impressing anyone. It may be slightly more cramped than an Uber Black, so people who prefer ample legroom might want to splurge for an Uber Black. But for regular, everyday transportation needs, UberX is just fine for most people.

Choose Uber Black if an elevated experience is important to you. It can be a strong option for fancy date nights, business meetings and people who enjoy the finer things in life — and are happy to pay extra for it. Uber Black drivers are known for putting in the extra effort to deliver a luxury ride. Also, choose Black if you need to schedule a ride in advance.

And keep in mind that even though UberX is cheaper, prices can spike when demand is high, like at crowded airports or after a show or sporting event at a major venue. In that case, reserving an Uber Black in advance could be the smarter option since you can lock in the rate to avoid surge pricing.

  • For example, it usually costs about $30 to Uber from the airport to my apartment in Los Angeles. But when I flew in over the Christmas holidays, surge pricing hiked the cost up to $40. In that case, I might’ve been better off scheduling an Uber Black in advance since it costs only $43 and would’ve picked me up at the terminal. Instead, I had to walk about 15 minutes over to the Uber area with all my luggage.

Case study — JFK to Times Square

Here’s how much it costs to take an UberX and Uber Black from the JFK airport to Times Square in New York City:

  • UberX: $71
  • Black: $122
  • Black SUV: $178

Prices were obtained in March 2021. Keep in mind that rates vary based on location, distance and time. To get an estimate, you can use Uber’s online price estimate tool.

Alternatives to UberX and Uber Black

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Ends

Orbitz Orbitz

Car rentals in Los Angeles from $21 per day

Bottom line

UberX and Uber Black both offer reliable, private rides on-demand, though UberX is usually cheaper and Black is known for high-end rides in luxury vehicles. But if you’re looking for the best Uber has to offer, go with Uber Lux instead.

For more information on riding or driving with Uber, check out our guide to the ins and outs of Uber.

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