Uber just launched a new feature that's sure to earn you some brownie points with your friends and family, should you choose to use it.
Starting today, you can now request a ride for someone else from the Uber app. The feature is available in more than 30 countries; just make sure you have the latest version of the app.
We can see this being useful in a lot of different scenarios: Maybe your friend's phone is about to die after a night out so they can't request their own ride, or perhaps you want to help a loved one get to work while their car is in the shop. Maybe your grandma, who doesn't drive anymore, needs to get to a doctor's appointment and you can't take her.
Now, when you request an Uber and set a pickup that's away from your current location, the app will ask if the ride is for a friend or family member. You can select the rider from your address book, set their location, and request a ride on their behalf.
More From PCmag
You'll end up paying for that ride, unless you're in a country where cash is an available payment option (which is mostly only available in Asia, India, and Latin American countries). In that case, you can select cash as the payment method and the rider will have to pay at the end of the trip.
Once a car is en route, the rider will get a text message with the driver's details and a link to track their whereabouts. The message will also mention who is paying for the ride. Riders will be able to contact the driver directly, and vice versa.
Uber Product Managers Kyle Miller and Mike Lu said in a blog post that "today nearly 10 percent of the global population consists of people aged 65 and over and that number is only expected to increase.
"Keeping these insights top of mind, we've been thinking about ways to make our app more accessible to everyone in the family," they wrote. "We're committed to providing safe, reliable transportation options for everyone in the family – including seniors."
Meanwhile, Uber just last week added a tipping feature to its app, one of several changes the scandal-rocked company has announced of late to appease frustrated drivers. The other concessions include reducing the cancellation grace period from five minutes to two, so drivers already en route to pick up a rider will collect more in fees if the rider decides to cancel. Uber will also pay drivers a per-minute rate for wait times of more than two minutes, something it started testing last year in Dallas, New Jersey, New York, and Phoenix.