UberBLACK vs UberLUX

Find out the difference between these 2 luxury vehicle choices and why it matters.

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Uber did not begin as a ridesharing platform. Rather, it started as a way for people to order high-end vehicles through their phones: the original car (before UberX ever was) was UberBLACK.

Since then, UberLUX has made its way onto the market begging the question: what's the difference?

While both offer high-end vehicles driven by professional drivers, LUX is more premium, offering luxurious cars such as Cadillacs and Bentleys. For this reason it's priced higher and is less widely available around Australia than UberBLACK.

We drill down the differences further.

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What is UberBLACK?

UberBLACK vehicles are the "original Uber"; high-end hire cars delivered to your location through the app. UberBLACK vehicles in Australia need to meet the following requirements:

  • Be a 2010 model or later
  • Have current state registration
  • Have official, registered Hire Car (HC) number plates in NSW and Victoria, a Charter Vehicle Licence in Perth and MV registration plates in Adelaide
  • Must be in excellent condition
  • Be an approved make and model

What is UberLUX?

This is the most high-end Uber vehicle available and is described by the ridesharing platform as the "ultimate luxury". UberLUX vehicles need to meet the following requirements:

  • Be a 2010 model or later
  • Have current NSW registration
  • Have official, registered HC number plates
  • Have no cosmetic damage, missing pieces and no commercial branding/decals
  • Be an approved make and model

What differentiates UberBLACK and UberLUX cars from the traditional Uber service?

Opting for the higher-end BLACK or LUX cars guarantees you a newer vehicle of a "hire car" standard.

The criteria above and the restricted vehicle list show much tighter requirements in terms of what can and can't be used. There's also a difference in the drivers, with those driving under the BLACK and LUX banners having to apply for a separate licence, while UberX drivers don't.

Arguably, this could provide you with a more experienced driver compared to those that sign up for UberX (ie, almost anyone).

How much does each service cost to use?

As UberLUX is only available in Sydney, we've compared costs for each for rides in Sydney only.

Fees UberBLACK UberLUX
Base fare $10 $20
Per minute $1 $1
Per kilometre $2.90 $4.50
Minimum fare $25 $30
Cancellation fee $10 $10


Where in Australia are UberBLACK and UberLUX available?

State UberBLACK UberLUX
NSW yes yes
VIC yes No
WA yes No
NT No No
SA yes No

Are UberBLACK and UberLUX worth it?

This depends on what you're looking for from the service. If you're looking for a nicer vehicle for a special occasion, business purposes or just because you can afford it, the high standard that UberBLACK and UberLUX drivers and vehicles maintain will ensure you have a great trip.

Based on forum comments, you are likely to get a more professional driver as they must have HC number plates and many will dress to impress.

UberLUX drivers in particular have high standards to maintain. Drivers need to keep a 4.6-star minimum rating otherwise they will be moved to UberBLACK until their rating improves.

To decide whether or not Uber's premium vehicles are worth it, work out how much you're willing to pay for a better car and a more professional service. Then you will know whether or not this product is right for you.

Picture: Shutterstock

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