Uber launches in Sioux Falls

June 20, 2019

Ride-sharing service Uber has launched in South Dakota.

“We are excited about the launch of a new safe, reliable and affordable transportation option in South Dakota, along with additional flexible economic opportunities for local residents,” said Danielle Sipf, head of operations for Uber South Dakota.

“Uber now offers residents in South Dakota as well as tourists and businesspeople visiting the Mount Rushmore State an additional attractive option for their mobility mix, next to public transport, taxi and other sharing services. With this, we want to convince more people to consider options beyond their personal car.”

Uber representatives and Sioux Falls city officials announced the new service today at an event in downtown Sioux Falls, with Mayor Paul TenHaken, council member Christine Erickson and Sipf taking the first Uber ride in South Dakota around downtown. Once that ride started, an Uber representative turned on the system to officially mark Uber’s arrival.

The mayor said he was excited to welcome Uber into the Sioux Falls community.

“This was a girl we’ve courted for a long time, and she finally said yes,” TenHaken said. “A big part of our administration is about moving the city forward and making it more accessible. It’s a good day for our city.”

Uber driver Nancy Kieffer, along with a handful of other Uber drivers, also was present to celebrate the event. Kieffer said she is looking forward to immediately start serving the Sioux Falls community through the service. Drivers can sign up through uber.com.

“I am super excited,” she said. “This is a great thing for Sioux Falls. A lot of people are going to be trying it in the next few weeks.”

As of this afternoon, UberX, which accommodates four riders, and UberXL, which serves up to six, are active in and around Sioux Falls, Rapid City and Aberdeen. Sipf said the company is working with other South Dakota cities to get permits and is looking into adding food delivery service Uber Eats and other services to the state.

“We are always evaluating different products and markets,” she said. “We’re starting in South Dakota with the launch of UberX and UberXL, and we’ll expand from there over time.”

As part of the launch, Uber made a $5,000 donation to MADD South Dakota, the Mothers Against Drunk Driving organization.

As part of the donation, both organizations will work together to promote greater access to rides sharing as a service that contributes to road safety and prevents impaired driving.

“Having access to safe, convenient and accessible transportation options is a crucial way to reduce impaired driving and related crashes, deaths and injuries,” said Connie Hobbs, South Dakota MADD chapter leader.

“With Uber, you can book a safe and reliable ride home at the push of a button. MADD is very pleased that this important option is now available to the people of South Dakota.”

The service will further increase road safety in the city, which has already seen improvements since the arrival of Lyft almost two years ago, TenHaken said.

“We’ve seen decreases in drunk driving arrests because of these services,” he said. “Any time we can expand that, it’s great for safety, affordability and getting around town.”

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Uber launches in Sioux Falls

Ride-sharing service Uber has launched in South Dakota.

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