Between May 2022 and March 2023, RideMon, the partnership between Mountain Line and the ridesharing app Uber, provided 2,676 rides.
By December 2022, the on-demand van service was poised to achieve its purpose of replacing Mountain Line’s Grafton/Fairmont Road and Mountain Heights bus routes — two of the transit authority’s most-difficult, and expensive, coverage areas.
In fact, Mountain Line leadership had already started looking at a possible expansion of the program into the Eastern Circulator and Crown routes
But less than a year in, Uber is canceling the trip.
Mountain Line was notified earlier this year that Uber planned to end the partnership at the end of June, at which point the transit authority will partner with on-demand transit software provider Spare to continue the RideMon service.
“Our service won’t change any and we hope to make a seamless transition without service disruption,” Mountain Line CEO Dave Bruffy explained. “Our challenge will be to help passengers move to this new app versus the Uber app.”
According to Bruffy, Spare offers features not available through Uber, including the ability to book subscription services, meaning frequent rides at the same time to the same locations.
The Spare app also allows riders to book rides using an “arrive by” time and not just pick-up times.
After the switch, rides will still cost the same 75 cents as bus fare and will still be covered by Mountain Line’s tax passes, 30-day passes and by providing WVU identification.