Every year, tens of millions of visitors descend upon the City Beautiful to experience the magic that the city has to offer.
Now, Orlando has another piece of magic to share. With the arrival of Uber, consumers can connect to a seamless, reliable and affordable ride at the touch a button.
Orlando is among 130 cities around the world that offer a transformative way to move around and have become a part of the innovation economy. From Beijing to Rio to Miami, riders can open the Uber app and connect to the same service they have come to know and love.
Our core mission is simple: connect every resident and visitor in Orlando with safe, reliable transportation at the touch of a button.
Our mission starts with safety. Each driver is subjected to a rigorous driving and background check. Our best-in-class insurance of $1 million per trip is more than three times what is required of the local taxi industry.
In addition, our continuous feedback loop ensures each trip has unrivaled transparency — the driver's name, phone number and picture, as well as vehicle make, model and license plate, are displayed to the rider immediately, and each rider has the ability to rate the experience after each trip. We curate our platform to ensure only the highest-rated partners remain active.
Thanks to innovative technologies like Uber, Orlando residents and visitors can leave their car at home because a convenient, affordable, and reliable ride is just the touch of a button away.
National organizations like Mother's Against Drunk Driving recognize what better, more-reliable options mean for communities. That's why Uber is proud to team up with MADD to combat drunken driving in cities across the country.
The results are clear. In Seattle, Uber's analysis shows that DUI arrests declined by 10 percent after Uber arrived. In Orlando, that means saving many lives each year by delivering rides you can count on, whenever and wherever, so that people never have to choose between a bottle of wine at dinner and a smart decision to get home.
The value proposition on the driver side may be less obvious, though no less compelling.
In each new market, we're giving economic opportunity to thousands of entrepreneurs to set their own hours, be their own boss, and make thousands of dollars each week in the process.
Our platform creates 20,000 jobs each month globally, and is responsible for $2.8 billion in economic activity in the U.S., according to an analysis by ECONorthwest, an international consulting firm.
Despite the revolutionary new options for riders and drivers, Uber still faces resistance from special interests, which aim to limit consumer and driver choice and protect their long-entrenched monopolies.
Such special interests will have you believe their concerns are around safety, when in reality they have concerns around losing their monopoly.
Companies that choose to compete on the basis of keeping competitors out because they hold influence and fear competition are bad for customers and bad for cities.
Uber is proud to compete on the basis of experience, both on the rider and driver side.
As the next world-class city, it's important for Orlando's policymakers to have an open mind about developing modern regulatory frameworks that are focused on protecting rider safety, consumer choice and economic opportunities.
The bottom line is that with more transportation options, riders win, drivers win and cities win.
William Guernier is director of East Coast operations for Uber.