New Yorkers spending time in the Hamptons this summer won’t be able call Uber Technologies Inc. for a ride.
The East Hampton town board altered its licensing rules to require every taxi driver to have a physical office in the town. After the change, Uber announced Friday that it was ending operations effective immediately from East Hampton to Montauk, saying it would be “impossible” to comply with the rules.
“There is an unquestionable need and demand for Uber in the Hamptons because taxi service has been historically unreliable,” Matt Wing, a spokesman for the San Francisco-based car-booking service, said in an e-mail. “Unfortunately the East Hampton town supervisor and Town Board have changed the rules, banning Uber from the town and denying their constituents access to our service.”
Uber is popular with New York City residents heading to the Hampton’s beach towns for the summer, spurring what the car service calls a pop-up market where drivers operate during high-demand periods. On Long Island, the average trip is about three times the distance as a ride in New York City, generating more revenue for drivers, the company has said.
Uber sent an e-mail to its East Hampton riders to “make your voice heard” and contact Supervisor Larry Cantwell to “help bring Uber back.”
Cantwell told the Southampton Press that his office received more than 100 calls and 600 e-mails after Uber’s announcement. The supervisor’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.