Uber riders in New York City now know what they’re paying before they get in the car. The company announced the new feature earlier this summer and launched it in places like San Francisco and Los Angeles soon after.
Now the feature is available in New York City. So even when there’s high demand and rides are more expensive — which the app will notify the user about — the fare will be exactly what’s quoted for you. In other words, the amount you’re quoted is binding.
This takes the guessing out of determining how much a ride will cost and makes it easier for a user to decide which service to use — whether that means choosing between UberPool and UberX or UberX and a competitor like Lyft.
On the back end, the company uses a combination of historical data and real-time traffic information to decide what to charge the rider.
The combination of Uber’s upfront fares, UberPool and its smart routes system — which finds a pickup point that is more efficient for the driver and for the route — is a clear move by the company to make Uber’s service more of a utility as the company’s CEO Travis Kalanick so often talks about. Uber started as a private service that brought individual riders door-to-door. While that’s still an option and the route is still up to the driver, the combination of these features is an attempt to make the ride more efficient and convenient for both the rider and the driver.
This article originally appeared on Recode.net.